New York Marks 20 Years Since Attack on World Trade Center

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Army members hold a U.S. flag during a ceremony to mark the 20th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 attacks in New York City, September 11, 2021. (Brendan McDermid/Reuters)

New York marked 20 years since the attack on the World Trade Center on Saturday, with a ceremony at Ground Zero.

Church bells and sirens sounded across the city at 8:46 a.m. and 9:03 a.m., the exact minutes when planes crashed into the Twin Towers. At Ground Zero as well, a bell was chimed to mark the crashes while attendees held moments of silence. Following the bell marking the second crash, Bruce Springsteen performed his song “I’ll See You in My Dreams:”

A third moment of silence was held at 9:37 a.m., to mark the moment when American Airlines Flight 77 crashed into the Pentagon. The bell was chimed again at 10:03 a.m., the moment when United Flight 93 crashed into a field near Shanksville, Pa., following a struggle between passengers and hijackers.

Family members read the names of those killed in the attacks, as is traditionally done every year. The reading and ceremony took place in-person this year, after the reading of names was prerecorded in 2020 to avoid gatherings amid the coronavirus pandemic. Many of those participating in the name-reading ceremony this year were not yet born when relatives lost their lives in the attacks.

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President Biden and First Lady Jill Biden were in attendance at Ground Zero, standing alongside former presidents and first ladies Barack and Michelle Obama, and Bill and Hillary Clinton. Biden released a prerecorded speech on Friday to mark the anniversary of the attacks, but was not scheduled to deliver a live speech.

“In the days that followed September 11, 2001, we saw heroism everywhere — in places expected and unexpected,” Biden said in the speech. “We also saw something all too rare: a true sense of national unity.”

Biden left Ground Zero mid-way through the ceremony to travel to Shanksville, and will continue from there to the Pentagon. Vice President Kamala Harris and former President Bush had already arrived to attend the memorial at Shanksville.

PHOTO GALLERY: Remembering 9/11

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