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An Indelible Memory Of September 11th

Let us hope that New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg is correct in the words he spoke at Ground Zero last Thursday, the seventh anniversary of the tragic terrorist attacks in New York and Washington. The date 9/11, Bloomberg said, "lives forever in our hearts and our history, a tragedy that unites us in a common memory and a common story, the day that began like any other and ended as none ever has."

Let us hope that is, indeed, true, that our nation will forever remember that solemn tragedy and continue to honor those who lost their lives or who were injured on that day and in the Afghanistan and Iraq wars that have followed.

Let us hope we will remain vigilant against al-Qaida and others intent on harming our people and the Democratic principles by which we live, particularly in light of a report this week that we are still ill-guarded against another terrorist attack.

Let us hope that the slogan that so many Americans proudly displayed shortly after the attacks, "We will never forget," rings true.

Judging from the editorials and the solemn ceremonies being held last Thursday, 9/11 promises to be indelibly marked in our nation's psyche and properly recorded in our history.

Although it is years away for memorials to be built in New York and the field in Shanksville, Pa., where Flight 93, headed for the Capitol, crashed, the government dedicated the firstmajor 9/11 memorial today. The two-acre park, outside the Pentagon's west wall where American Airlines Flight 77 crashed, consists of 184 benches that each bear a victim's name.

Meanwhile, in New York, where a museum and the reflecting pools at the footprints of where the World Trade Center twin towers stood, is stalled, there is still a way to pay one's respect. Merely standing at the precipice of the massive construction site gives one an overwhelming sense of the magnitude of the devastation.

In Shanksville, volunteers have guided more than 750,000 visitors who have come to the site. This year, they are being honored with the National Park Service's George B. Hartzog, Jr. Award for Outstanding Volunteer Service.

Let us continue to remember 9/11. Let us never forget.

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