9 yeards after the World Trade Center Tragedy
The mourners gathered on a bright sunny morning reminiscent of the quiet Tuesday shattered by the attacks.
Ground Zero fell dead quiet four times, with moments of silence to mark the exact moments when each tower was hit – and when each collapsed into a pile of toxic rubble.
Many family members wore T-shirts with their loved ones’ pictures, or carried photos of the victims. They tossed roses into a pair of reflecting pools symbolizing the lost 110-story towers.
The passing years made the day less painful for at least a few.
Juan Carlos Segarra, 36, felt just the opposite nearly a decade after his dad, Juan, perished in the north tower: “It never gets easier.”
Actress Kristin Chenoweth received an ovation after performing the song “Borrowed Angels,” with the apropos lyric, “Their love goes on and on, so why do they go so soon?”
The service ended with a poignant if peculiar musical pairing: A choir singing Warren Zevon‘s dying lament, “Keep Me In Your Heart,” followed by three buglers playing a mournful “Taps.”
Memorials were also held yesterday at the two other sites where Americans died on Sept. 11 – Pentagon, with President Obama as a guest, and in Shanksville, Pa., with First Lady Michelle Obama and her predecessor, Laura Bush.
The president marked the occasion with a call for tolerance.
“As Americans we are not – and never will be – at war with Islam,” the president said. “It was not a religion that attacked us that September day – it was Al Qaeda, a sorry band of men which perverts religion.”