(NEW YORK) – Americans on Sunday honored the memory of nearly 3,000 people killed in the worst attacks in history, on September 11, 2001, that deeply traumatized the country.
In New York, a crowd gathered near Manhattan’s impressive museum and memorial fell silent for two minutes, at 8:46 and 9:03, the exact times that two planes hijacked by Islamist commandos crashed into the North and West Towers. South of the World Trade Center.
In the audience, Vice President Kamala Harris listened to the long list of victims’ names. President Joe Biden participated in another ceremony, at the Pentagon.
“While the pain fades a bit with time, my father’s permanent absence is as palpable as ever,” Jon’s son Leslie Albert said after reading the names of several victims, including his father’s.
Another relative of a victim, calling on political figures present to heal America’s deep divisions, said “it shouldn’t take another tragedy to unite our nation.”
On September 11, 2001, 2,977 people died in the deadliest attacks in history, committed by the jihadist organization Al Qaeda.
Two planes hit two World Trade Center towers in New York, a third hit the Pentagon, and a fourth, which appeared to be targeting the Capitol or the White House, crashed into a wooded area in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, after a passenger rebellion.
No one aboard the four hijacked commercial airliners survived.
Near the capital, Washington, Biden commemorated the anniversary at the Pentagon. Looking solemn and with a hand on his heart, he participated in a flower-laying ceremony near the huge Defense Department headquarters building.
“We will never forget,” he previously tweeted, vowing to “continue to keep alive the memory of the precious lives that were stolen from us” during those attacks 21 years ago.
Jill Biden, the first lady of the United States, participated in a morning ceremony in Shanksville, Pennsylvania.
International officials also paid tribute to the victims of attacks that marked the entire world.
“Ukraine, facing missile attacks on a daily basis, knows well what terrorism is and sincerely sympathizes with the American people,” tweeted President Volodymyr Zelensky, whose country was invaded by Russia in late February.
On Saturday night New York was lit up with a “Tribute in Light” showing two blue beams projected into the night sky, symbolizing the Twin Towers.