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9/11 20 Years Later: Visitors To The Memorial Site Pay Solemn Respects

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – In Lower Manhattan, the pools built where the towers once stood provide a poignant reminder of the somber occasion: 20 years since the September 11th attacks.

Friday there was a clear blue sky overhead, much like that fateful day 20years ago.

Visitors gathered all day at the site, paying respects and memorializing those we lost.

On 9/11, St. Nicholas Church was destroyed when the towers came down. It’s taken 20 years to rebuild it. Just Friday, the cross was placed on top.

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As CBS2’s Dick Brennan reports, there were mournful sounds in a sacred place, the 9/11 Memorial Plaza, where, after 20 years of anguish and suffering, they still come -those who loved and lost – to carry out their ritual of remembrance.

“When you stand here, what do you feel?” Brennan asked.

“I’m just so hurt,” said June Bing of Easton, Penn.

Her daughter lost her boyfriend on that day.

“Just to run my hand over the names…. First time I ever did that,” she said.

It’s a place to honor those who made the great sacrifice. First responders who now stand in the pantheon of heroes of American History, who led the way in our darkest hour. Beacons of light and bravery in a day of unimagined darkness.

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“They sacrificed for people they didn’t even know,” said Illinois firefighter Jason Bland. “A brotherhood… that’s why we do it.”

To some young people, 9/11 is a memory of being a child, and trying to understand.

“I was in sixth grade.. I was just as shocked as everyone was,” one person said.

Saturday, they will read the names, take six moments of silence and mark two decades of anguish. But also carry forward a great pride of what so many did that day.

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Chip Schultz, a Marine Corps veteran, carries his patriotism on his shoulder.

“I’m proud to be an American,” he said, getting emotional. “I will be ’til the day I die. And I’ll never forget what happened to this country 20 years ago.”

 

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