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Mass. Families Remember Loved Ones Killed On 9/11

This article is more than 11 years old.

Some wept openly, others wiped away tears and others softly ran their fingers across the names of their loved ones etched on a granite memorial as the families of the 206 Massachusetts victims of Sept. 11 marked the 10th anniversary of the terrorist attacks Sunday with simple ceremonies and words of hope.

Pilots, flight attendants, ground crews and other employees of American Airlines and United Airlines also paid tribute to their colleagues during a somber ceremony at the 9/11 memorial at Logan International Airport, where the two planes were hijacked before slamming into New York's World Trade Center.

And ordinary people, who didn't know anyone killed in the attacks, came out to do something to help. On the Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway in Boston, people made care packages to send to U.S. soldiers deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Dianne Walsh, of Westford, who lost her sister, Christine Barbuto, on American Flight 11, brought her three children to the 9/11 memorial in the Boston Public Garden for the first time.

"Before, they were too little to understand what happened," Walsh said of her children, now 16, 14 and 13. "Now, they're old enough to be involved and really appreciate what's going on."

The oldest, Nicholas, has been collecting boxes of cereal for the needy in memory of 9/11 for the last three years. This year, he helped Mayor Thomas Menino place a wreath of white roses at the 9/11 memorial at Boston Public Garden.

Before the early morning ceremony, volunteers planted nearly 3,000 small American flags in the lawn. The flags blew in a soft breeze as a state honor guard marched to the tune of "You're a Grand Old Flag" as mourners walked up to the memorial in small groups, each looking for the name of their loved one.

"You think about the people who died, but you don't realize how many others were deeply affected," said Dianne Walsh.

At Logan Airport, airline employees trickled in to a memorial featuring two large glass panels with the names of each flight crew member and passenger who perished.

Ralph Bagarella, a former flight attendant who was Boston president of the Association of Flight Attendants for United on Sept. 11, 2001, came to see the memorial for the first time Sunday.

"I knew them all. We were all friends," he said of the colleagues killed that day. "I just felt this year it was something I needed to do, to be here, to see the other flight attendants and to remember."

One of the flight attendants was Madeline Amy Sweeney, of Acton, an American Airlines flight attendant who provided information about a hijacking to the authorities before Flight 11 crashed into the towers. Each year, a civilian bravery award is given in her honor, and Sunday it was presented posthumously to Angelica Guerrero, a West Springfield mother who died in June as she shielded her daughter in a bathtub as a tornado destroyed their home.

This article was originally published on September 11, 2011.

This program aired on September 11, 2011. The audio for this program is not available.


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