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11th Anniversary Ceremonies of 9/11 Begin in NY [PHOTOS]

 

NEW YORK (AP) – The 11th anniversary ceremony of the Sept. 11 terror attacks has begun in New York with a moment of silence to mark the moment that the first hijacked jetliner crashed into the World Trade Center in 2001.

The reading of nearly 3,000 victims’ names in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania continued as usual this year. But many felt it was time to move forward after the emotional turning point of last year’s 10th anniversary. For the first time in New York, only family members were to speak at the anniversary ceremony. Elected officials had spoken in past years.

Jane Pollicino was among the 300 people who gathered Tuesday morning at the Sept. 11 memorial, which opened last year. She says there’s less pressure during this year than the 10th year anniversary.

President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama and White House staffers observed a moment of silence Tuesday on the White House south lawn in memory of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

With three bell tolls and a bugler playing taps, the White House observance marks the 11th anniversary of the suicide hijackings that struck New York and the Pentagon and downed a plane in Pennsylvania, leaving nearly 3,000 dead.

Obama and the first lady also planned to attend an observance ceremony at the Pentagon later Tuesday morning.

In the afternoon, the president was scheduled to visit wounded soldiers and their families at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.

Vice President Joe Biden was traveling to Pennsylvania to deliver remarks at the Flight 93 National Memorial Commemorative Service.

Mitt Romney says the United States is indeed a united nation in its determination to halt terrorists and to protect freedom “at home and across the world.”

The Republican presidential nominee issued a written statement marking 11 years since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on America. Romney was to address the anniversary in a speech to the National Guard in Reno, Nev., later Tuesday, a rare day in which the presidential race will not feature overt campaigning.

In his statement, Romney said the United States will never forget those who died or stop caring for their families. He expressed thanks to U.S. troops and warned those who would attack America that “we are united, one nation under God, in our determination to stop them.”

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