We shall never forget
We shall keep this day,
We shall keep the events and the tears
In our minds, our memory and our hearts
and take them with us as we carry on.
At memorials and in their schools, homes, and places of work across the country on Wednesday morning, Americans paused to remember those lost in the Sept. 11 attacks that shook the nation 12 years ago.
At 8:46 a.m. EST, crowds gathered at the site of the Twin Towers in New York City observed a moment of silence marking when the first plane crashed in the city’s downtown. President Barack Obama joined by the Vice President and First Lady also marked the moment on the lawn of the White House.
The president later observed a moment of silence at the Pentagon to mark the time at which Flight 77 struck the building, joined by Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey.
“Let us have the strength to face down the threats that endure, different though they may be from 12 years ago, so that as long as there are those who will strike our citizens, we will stand vigilant and defend our nation,” the president said outside the Pentagon.
“Let us have the wisdom to know that while force is at times necessary, force alone cannot build the world we seek, so we recommit to the partnerships and progress that builds mutual respect and deepens trust and allows more people to live in dignity, prosperity, and freedom,” said Obama, who on Tuesday night made a forceful case for military action against Syria in an address to the American public.
Other officials and politicians, including lawmakers in the Senate, paid tribute to those who lost their lives at ceremonies in the nation’s capital.