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N.C., nation remember Sept. 11 attacks

Posted September 11, 2008
Updated October 12, 2011

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— While the nation holds a moment of silence, North Carolina will show that from military centers to small towns, it, too, remembers the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.

Gov. Mike Easley has ordered all government offices to lower their flags to half-staff to honor the 2,974 people who died in the attacks.

Bells rang from Pope Air Force Base and from a Fayetteville church six times, beginning at 8:46 a.m. – the exact time the first hijacked airliner hit the World Trade Center towers. Bells also tolled to mark when the three other airplanes crashed and when the towers fell.

In a hangar, by a tarmac where soldiers and airmen have left for war, and come home from war, the Star-Spangled Banner rang out and servicemen and women remembered where they were seven years ago.

Air Force Col. John McDonald was inside the Pentagon when it was attacked.

Sgt. Marcus Wilson was 13, in middle school. "I really thought that America was safe from everything," he recalled. Sept. 11 changed his thinking and helped determine his future.

The memory, he said, "It's a motivation ... to fight better each day."

Major Gen. William Ingram Jr. recalled the service of North Carolina soldiers during a ceremony at the North Carolina National Guard headquarters in Raleigh. The name of 10 guardsmen killed in the war on terror were read before a moment of silence at 9:03 a.m.

A candle-lit remembrance ceremony will be held at Fort Bragg, and Cary will host four musical performances around the town as part of a nationwide program, "September 11th Commemoration: A Time of Remembrance and Reflection."

A statewide campaign to help injured veterans kicked off with a balloon release from the Kerr Drugstore in North Hills mall. Wounded North Carolina troops will write their fears for the future on balloons and then let them go.

Get the full schedule of 9/11 events around the region.

President George Bush led the moment of silence on the South Lawn of the White House. He then went to the Pentagon, where he dedicated a memorial that has 184 benches over small reflecting pools, representing each life lost when American Airlines Flight 77 flew into the symbol of U.S. military might.

The Pentagon Memorial was built at a cost of $22 million on a 1.9-acre parcel of land adjacent to the Pentagon and within view of the crash site.

"The president thinks about 9/11 every single day when he wakes up and before he goes to bed," White House press secretary Dana Perino said Wednesday. "This is what he's concerned about. He's always been concerned about another attack on our country. Thankfully, we haven't had one."

Politics came to a standstill when the Democratic and Republican rivals for president appeared at Ground Zero in New York. Sens. John McCain and Barack Obama laid wreaths in the pit that marks the largest loss of life in the attacks. On Thursday evening, they will appear together in a Columbia University forum to discuss their views on public service.

Obama and McCain agreed to suspend all TV ads critical of each other for the day, and neither candidate scheduled any political events Thursday.

The Obama and McCain campaigns issued a joint statement, saying they would make the Ground Zero visit in thanks for all emergency responders who served during and after the attacks as well as the military troops still defending the nation.

"We will put aside politics and come together to renew that unity, to honor the memory of each and every American who died, and to grieve with the families and friends who lost loved ones," the statement said.

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  • mozingotimothy Sep 12, 2008

    We need to continue to pray for the families of those who lost their lives on 9-11-01. I will certainly never forget that Tuesday morning. It happened the day after my birthday. I was watching the video "Left Behind" when my Aunt called me and told me about the first plane hitting the tower. It was a tragic event, but it was also miraculous that many who were supposed to be at work at the twin towers that day had trouble making it in and their lives were spared. It is a day that I will never forget. For a time it brought us together as nation. I hope we never forget to remember continually these people in our prayers.

  • davidgnews Sep 11, 2008

    Thank you TG. Funny how the uninformed have a lazy trait to ride on. Lyle

    For people that want less government, they sure want Bush to 'protect' them. Like he has a Superman(TM) suit or something.

    It will only get worse. There's uninformed, and there's deliberately uninformed. Then there's talk radio, which is 'affirmative action' for neocons.

  • hlwn7 Sep 11, 2008

    Lyle,
    Actually 90 minutes of science fiction might be fun.

  • Lyle Sep 11, 2008

    Try Google: 9/11 Mysteries-Demolitions Part 1. It's 90 minutes long, so it might challenge your attention span.

  • Lyle Sep 11, 2008

    Thank you TG. Funny how the uninformed have a lazy trait to ride on.

  • Lyle Sep 11, 2008

    imaback has been instigating for hours, and not providing any material for discussion. I have studied the available data as an American citizen who has access to such material, and you know obviously that data would not fit on this board. You need to educate yourself as you probably have done nothing to help your own perspective except for what Popular Mechanics And National Geographic have offered you. Now, get reading.

  • imback Sep 11, 2008

    " And my choosing to not debate a fact with the media police does not disregard the facts and does not prove anything except that you prefer to bully people around."

    Yea, I figured you wouldn't. I guess you that "think for themselves" arent able or willing to actually debate the issue intelligently. Much easier to throw stones I guess.

  • MatrixEscapee Sep 11, 2008

    imback: You are obviously looking to instigate. It is not my responsibility to spoon feed truth to you or anybody else. As intelligent beings, Humans are capable of researching and learning for themselves. And my choosing to not debate a fact with the media police does not disregard the facts and does not prove anything except that you prefer to bully people around.

  • imback Sep 11, 2008

    "The truth is hidden in plain sight for anyone who is interested in researching and thinking for themselves."

    Create your blog then. I challenge you and any other person who believes it was a conspiracy. Put your money where your mouth is. Create the blog. It can be nothing but URL links to all these facts. If you really believe it, show us. Otherwise, you are all talk.

  • hlwn7 Sep 11, 2008

    Lyle,
    What you call "facts" are the same kind of "facts" that purport we are holding aliens from another planet in Roswell NM. Science fiction is not my thing.

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