U.S. Commemorates 17th Anniversary of September 11

by Kim Boateng Posted on September 11th, 2018

New York City, USA : Ceremonies in the United States on Tuesday marked the 17th anniversary of the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, in which four airliners were hijacked. Two crashed into the World Trade Center in New York City, another hit the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. A fourth, headed for D.C., crashed in Shanksville, Pa. Nearly 3,000 people were killed.

New York on Tuesday honored the nearly 3,000 people killed on September 11, 2001 in a ceremony at Ground Zero, the site where hijacked Al-Qaeda planes brought down the Twin Towers.

The 17th anniversary was commemorated in fog and gentle rain by relatives of those who were killed, police officers, fire fighters and officials, who remembered what remains the deadliest single attack on US soil.

They gathered at the National September 11 Memorial and marked moments of silences at 8:46 am and 9:03 am, the exact times that the passenger jets struck the North and South Towers.

New York City held six moments of silence this morning; one for each plane that crashed in New York, Pennsylvania and at the Pentagon on September 11, 2001, and two to mark the moments that each of the Twin Towers fell

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, the US ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley and Mayor Bill de Blasio, together with his predecessors, Michael Bloomberg and Rudy Giuliani, were among those who attended.

“It is not a day to give speeches, it is not a day to talk about politics. It’s about the heart,” said Alice Greenwald, director of the 9/11 Memorial Museum.

“We need to stand together, that’s the only way we can deal with that kind of pain.”

In what has become an annual tradition, relatives began reading out the long list of those who were killed, saying a few words about those who died, in a ceremony that takes longer than three hours.

The New York Stock Exchange also marked a moment of silence at 9:20am and fire stations welcomed relatives of those who were killed. The department suffered a particularly heavy blow, with a total of 343 dead.

In addition to those killed on September 11, thousands of first responders, construction workers and residents have since developed illness, many of them terminal, as a result of inhaling the toxic fumes.

2,753 people died at Ground Zero on September11th. The attack exposed over 400,000 people to asbestos and poisonous gases or dust.

Since 2001, over 37,000 people have been diagnosed with physical and/or mental health conditions related to 9/11.

The September 11 attacks are linked to 60 plus types of cancer. Almost 10,000 people have been diagnosed with 9/11-related cancer, Most were first responders like firefighters, police. That number increases every year, doubling between 2015 and 2016

Emergency workers at Ground Zero on #September11 were 19% more likely than their peers to develop cancer over the next 7 years researchers say. 7,904 have been diagnosed since 2001. 381 have died.

Al-Qaeda hijacked a total of four planes. The third hit the Pentagon and the fourth, Flight 93, crashed in a field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania.

On the 17th anniversary of the attacks on September 11th, President Trump is marking the solemn occasion at the Flight 93 National Memorial in Shanksville, Pennsylvania. Mr. Trump is joined Tuesday by Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf and families of those killed in the attack.

“At 93 feet tall, the Tower of Voices is the first structure visitors see when they come to this now-sacred ground,” Trump said of memorial in Shanksville, PA. “It will hold 40 beautiful chimes that ring throughout these fields, each a unique note but all in perfect harmony.”

“Today, we mourn their loss, we share their story, and we commemorate their incredible valor,” Mr. Trump said of the Americans who died on that fateful flight 17 years ago.

“We grieve for [everyone] … stolen from us at the Twin Towers, the Pentagon and here in this Pennsylvania field. We honor their sacrifice by pledging to never flinch in the face of evil and to do whatever it takes to keep America safe,” President Trump said.

“America’s future is not written by our enemies. America’s future is written by our heroes. As long as this monument stands, as long as this memorial endures, brave patriots will rise up in America’s hours of need and they, too, will fight back.” President Trump said.

President Trump remembered actions of those aboard Flight 93: “They bravely charged the cockpit. They attacked the enemy. They fought until the very end, and they stopped the forces of terror and defeated this wicked, horrible, evil plan.”

An open field in the rural area of Pennsylvania was the final resting place for passengers aboard United Airlines Flight 93 that September morning after three planes had already been flown into the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia. Passengers and crew stormed the cockpit after realizing their plane was being used in the next attack. It crashed in the open area killing all on board.

“Your tears are not shed alone for they are shared grief with an entire nation,” the president told those present.

A new monument added to the 2,200-acre memorial in honor of the heroes aboard that flight was dedicated on Sunday.

“This field is now a monument to American defiance,” the president said.

Image: A boy with the name of a 9/11 victim on the back of his shirt arranges a flower at the reflecting pools at the 9/11 Memorial near One World Trade Center at Ground Zero in New York City

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Kim Boateng

Kim Boateng

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