Rumsfeld: American Grit Will Mean Victory in War on Terror

By Sgt. Sara Wood, USA
American Forces Press Service

RENO, Nev., Aug.  2006 – As the fifth anniversary of the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, approaches, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld last night stressed the need for determination in the war on terror.

"Today we are engaged in conflicts that are again testing whether or not our country believes that the defense of liberty is worth the cost," Rumsfeld said while addressing the Veterans of Foreign Wars convention here.

The enemy in the war on terror is ruthless and will lie constantly to advance its cause, Rumsfeld said, but history has proven the American people have resolve and determination. He cited American perseverance following the attack on Pearl Harbor, in the battle of Iwo Jima and in the Korean War.

"History has shown time and again that if Americans have the patience and perseverance to see an effort through -- that we prevail," he said. "And the result of that perseverance is a safer and more secure world."

There is much debate in the country about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, but Rumsfeld called for people to use historical perspective when assessing the situation, and not to focus on setbacks. He said the veterans he was addressing are uniquely qualified to remind the American people that there have been setbacks and difficulties throughout every war in American history.

"You not only have lived history, you have made history," he told the audience. "You not only understand the nature of warfare, but many of you helped to transform the way wars are fought. And you know the price of freedom, because you risked your lives, shed blood, and lost friends in freedom's defense."

Iraq is still the epicenter of the war on terror, and although the insurgents want the world to believe otherwise, great progress is being made there, Rumsfeld said. A country that was once brutalized by a cruel dictatorship is working to secure a future under a representative government at peace with its neighbors.

Those who focus on setbacks in Iraq are fostering a "blame America first" mentality that threatens to undermine U.S. efforts in the war on terror, he said.

There will be setbacks in the war on terror, Rumsfeld acknowledged, but that does not mean the United States is losing ground. Americans have not quit in difficult times in the past, but have seen things through to victory, and will continue to do so.

"Today we will not tell 50 million Afghans and Iraqis that because the going is tough -- and it is tough, let there be no doubt -- that we will abandon them to the beheaders, the terrorists, the assassins, and 21st century fascists who seek to attack us abroad and here at home," he said.

At the convention, Rumsfeld received the Dwight D. Eisenhower Distinguished Service Award for his many years of service to the nation.

Donald H. Rumsfeld

Related Articles:
Military Capable of Meeting All Its Challenges, Rumsfeld Says
Rumsfeld to Stress to VFW Need for Resolve in Terror War

Related Sites:
Veterans of Foreign Wars


          There are lots of ways to find meaning in the events of 9/11.  Television can convey events as they happen.  A reporter can write history’s rough first draft.  Historians can widen the time frame and give us context…Filmmakers have a part to play, too, and I believe that sometimes, if you look clearly and unflinchingly at a single event, you can find in its shape something much larger than the event itself—the DNA of our times…Hence a film about United 93.


—Paul Greengrass


Christian Clemenson (kneeling) as Thomas Burnett in the middle of passenger huddle during last act of United 93; Cheyenne Jackson, as Mark Bingham, is standing behind with the maroon shirt and hat.


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 Highlights of notable coverage the film has received over the last week

 NewsMax (4/14/06) – “Rush Limbaugh Praises 'United 93' Movie” – “America's number one talk-radio host, Rush Limbaugh, is giving an enthusiastic thumbs up to the controversial new 9/11 movie, ‘United 93.’  Limbaugh said on Friday's broadcast that critics are wrong when they say it's too soon to revisit the events of Sept. 11, 2001.”

  Hollywood Elsewhere (4/12/06) – “Blown Away” by Jeffrey Wells – “Is Paul Greengrass's ‘United 93’ (Universal, 4.28) a knockout, a time-stopper, a mind-blower?  It sure as hell is . . . Is feeling power-drilled all over again by one of the worst real-life nightmares of all time a good thing?  To me, it is.  It happened, it's real, and this film knocks your socks off because it takes you right back to that surreal morning and that feeling, that almost-afraid-to-breathe feeling, and to me, that's partly what good films do -- they lift you out of your realm and make you forget about everything but what's on-screen.”

 Production Information


                Filmmaker PAUL GREENGRASS—the compassionate and socially aware writer/director behind films that study the impact of terrorism in Northern Ireland in Bloody Sunday and Omagh, racial violence in The Murder of Stephen Lawrence and one soldier’s abandonment in Resurrected—now focuses his cameras on the day that changed the world forever.

                In United 93, Greengrass creates a gripping, provocative drama that tells the story of the passengers, crew and the flight controllers who watched in dawning horror as United Airlines Flight 93 became the fourth hijacked plane on the day of the worst terrorist attacks on American soil: September 11, 2001.

                The filmmaker explores the events of this day by telling the story of a single flight and the ordinary, random sampling of flight crew, businessmen, wives, grandparents, students and others bound for San Francisco aboard a Boeing 757.  In the course of the just over 90 minutes that the plane was aloft, the world below entered a new and violent age—viewed through a fog that slowly dissipated to reveal that America herself was under attack.

                Faced with the daunting task of re-creating the events that took place onboard the doomed plane and down below, Greengrass and his researchers called upon a myriad of sources, conducting countless hours of face-to-face interviews with the families of the 40 passengers and crew, members of the 9/11 commission, flight controllers and other military and civilian personnel who took part in the events of the day.  These interviews were distilled and, along with details from flight recordings, public record and historical fact, became the basis for the film.  It was then played out by an ensemble of talented, yet largely unknown actors—democratically presented as random people sharing a flight—whose fact-grounded and acutely directed improvisations provided the highly charged human drama captured by Greengrass’ cameras. 

                The result is a trenchant study—chronicled and filmed in real time—of the incendiary collision of modern day and old world…and the courage that was born from such a crucible.

                Greengrass asserts, “One of the reasons why United 93 exerts such a powerful hold on our imaginations is precisely because we don’t know exactly what happened.  Who among us doesn’t think about that day and wonder how it must have been and how we might have reacted?”                    

                Painstakingly researched with the support of the families of the passengers and crew who lost their lives, United 93 paints an unforgettable and inspiring portrait of everyday people confronted with an unthinkable situation…who unwittingly become the first denizens in the new era of global terrorism that began that September morning.

                Greengrass writes, directs and produces United 93 and, along with producer LLOYD LEVIN (Hellboy, Boogie Nights), joins with powerhouse producers and co-chairs of Europe’s leading film production company, Working Title (Pride & Prejudice, Love Actually), TIM BEVAN and ERIC FELLNER.  Greengrass is joined behind the camera by director of photography BARRY ACKROYD (Ae Fond Kiss, Bread and Roses).  Many previous collaborators of Greengrass return for United 93, including editors CLARE DOUGLAS (Bloody Sunday, A Way of Life), CHRISTOPHER ROUSE (both Bourne films) and RICHARD PEARSON (Rent, The Bourne Supremacy); production designer DOMINIC WATKINS (Alpha Dog, The Bourne Supremacy); costume designer DINAH COLLIN (Shooting Dogs, Bloody Sunday); and composer JOHN POWELL (X-Men: The Last Stand, both Bourne films).  Working Title’s DEBRA HAYWARD (Nanny McPhee, The Interpreter) and LIZA CHASIN (Pride & Prejudice, Wimbledon) serve as the film’s executive producers. 

                In choosing the cast, the filmmakers sought to bring together an ensemble comprised of gifted actors (and, in some cases, real-life flight crew members, controllers and other personnel) who came armed with the talents and skills necessary to create vivid and real snapshots of the actual men and women onboard and involved with United Airlines Flight 93.  All approached the subject matter with the utmost sensitivity, keeping two goals at the forefront of their minds: to dignify the memory of those they were portraying and to arrive at, as Greengrass puts it, “a believable truth” of what happened during the 91-minute flight.               




                Paul Greengrass has spent the larger part of his career crafting socially aware, humane films about some of the thorniest issues of our modern day—the flashpoint at which politics turn to violence, beliefs slip into zealotry—in addition to helming an international blockbuster thriller, 2004’s The Bourne Supremacy.

                He is perhaps best remembered for his critically acclaimed, cinéma vérité exploration of the 1972 incident in Londonderry, Northern Ireland, when 13 unarmed civil rights demonstrators were shot by British soldiers—2002’s visceral drama, Bloody Sunday.  In his review of the film, Los Angeles Times’ critic Kenneth Turan called it, “A compelling, gut-clutching piece of advocacy cinema that carries you along in a torrent of emotion as it explores the awful complications of one terrifying day.  Bloody Sunday shows the power of real events dramatically conveyed.  Made by writer-director Paul Greengrass out of a sense of communal outrage that has not gone away, this film never wavers, never loses its focus or its conviction.  Bloody Sunday does the spirit of that awful day full and unforgettable justice.”

                Greengrass is, therefore, uniquely qualified to tackle a film that concerns the events that occurred on September 11, 2001, possessing both sensitivity to the subject matter (and its larger themes) and the cinematic talent to handle such a project (with its multiple story threads and constantly shifting viewpoint).  Since that autumn day nearly five years ago, the filmmaker has been intent upon telling a story of the epochal events of 9/11, with the question being, “At what point is it okay to put such a painful time on the screen?”

                According to Greengrass—informed with interviews from more than 100 family members and friends of the 40 fallen passengers and crew—the right time is when the families say, “Yes.”

                Greengrass says, “There are all sorts of films made.  We make films to divert us, to entertain us and to make us laugh—to take us to fantasy worlds and to make us understand love.  But also, there’s a place for films that explore the way the world is.  And Hollywood  has a long and honorable track record of making those types of films as well.”

                What Greengrass believes is that in examining the story of United 93, we see, in shocking microcosm and within the span of a mere half-hour, the challenges that now face our world as a whole.  He continues, “Forty ordinary people had 30 minutes to confront the reality of the way that we’re living now, decide on the best course of action and act.  They were the first people to inhabit the post 9/11 world—at a time when the rest of us were watching television dumbstruck, unable to understand what was going on.   At that moment, those people onboard that airplane knew very well—they could see exactly what they were dealing with—and were faced with a dreadful choice.  Do we sit here and do nothing and hope for the best, hope it turns out all right?  Or do we do something about it?  And if so, what can we do?

                “It seems to me that those are the two choices that face us today and have faced us ever since that day.  When you look at what happened on that airplane, you can see that there was a debate, an anguished debate in the most terrible of circumstances.  That group of people weighed those choices, made a decision and acted upon it.  And I think that if we look at what happened, we find a story of immense courage and fortitude—those people were very, very brave.  But we also find wisdom.”

                With regard to the timing of a motion picture about 9/11, Allison Vadhan, daughter of UA 93 passenger Kristin White Gould, offers, “It’s never going to be over for us families who’ve lost loved ones.  It’s never going to be over for the country, anyone who witnessed it on TV.  It’s always going to be touchy, awkward…and something that a part of us don’t want to see again.  But I feel the more films, the better.  We can’t forget.  We have to remember what happened, why it happened.  And we can’t fool ourselves into thinking that it won’t happen again if we forget about it.”

                Sandy Felt, who lost husband Edward P. Felt on the flight, explains, “There are lots of things in life that are difficult to do, and we do them because they’re the right thing to do.  This is one of those situations—I got involved in this because it was the right thing to do.  I can’t deny its existence.  I don’t know that it’s going to be any different for me a year from now, two years from now—it’s happened, we deal with it.  So I’d rather give you the story, and I’d rather remember the man that he was and be able to keep him alive for myself that way.”

                Kenny Nacke, brother of passenger Louis J. Nacke, II, shares, “I’m glad it’s being made because it’s the fifth year anniversary of it—and I would hate to see those 40 individuals forgotten.  What if roles were reversed?  I’ve done that, I’ve said, ‘Well, what if I was on Flight 93, and my brother was here today?’  And that’s why I’m involved.  I think he would have the loudest voice.  He would say, ‘These individuals need to be honored, cherished and remembered.’  And I’m going do my part to see that they are, and they’re given the credit that they’re due—not only for who they were, but what they did that day.”


Genesis of the Film


                Well before his contact with the families had bolstered Greengrass’ intention to make a 9/11 film, the writer/director had been vigilantly following the media’s coverage of the day and its aftermath.  After the completion of The Bourne Supremacy and the interruption of a subsequent studio project, the filmmaker’s thoughts about making the film returned.  Yet, he thought, “I wasn’t sure it was the right time.” 

                He discussed his idea with producer Lloyd Levin:  to use United 93 as a focal point, a prism through which to view the events of the day, to give the audience “an extraordinary way into 9/11.”  Greengrass then sat down and, drawing on his previous work and research, composed a document that included his feelings and ideas about the project, which eventually became a 21-page treatment.  Completed, it contained his reasons for making the film, as well as a time-coded, scene-by-scene plot, telling the general story of the morning as viewed by those in the flight towers and centers on the ground and those aboard the plane itself.  This, in turn, was used to pitch the project; eventually, production and distribution deals were secured in the summer of 2005. 

                Greengrass’ aim to keep the story among the flight controllers and the flight’s passengers and crew was intentional.  Quoting from the treatment, he says, “It’s not a film with neat character arcs.  What it does do is pick up 44 individuals as they congregate at the airport for a plane journey, follow them as they enter the plane, and take their 90-minute journey in real time, cutting away only to the various air traffic control centers that follow their progress, on whose screens the entire horror of the full 9/11 operation is played out.” 

                In August, Greengrass tapped associate Kate Solomon to act as researcher and family liaison.  Solomon began by sending a letter to all of the families of United 93’s passengers and crew.  In the letter, Greengrass’ goals for the project were discussed, and he asked for their cooperation in helping to establish profiles of all of those onboard.  Ultimately, nearly all of the families participated in the process.  What followed in September and October was seven weeks of face-to-face interviews with the families and friends—more than 100 were conducted in all.

                Solomon provides, “They wished to be involved, to honor and remember their loved ones.  It’s still a painful subject, but many felt that their involvement would help us get it right.” 

                The families were also kept involved all through production of United 93.  They were notified once casting had been completed and were sent a full cast list and a cast picture of the actors who would portray their family members—some of the actors personally met with the families, while others got in touch on the phone.  Solomon also sent out bi-weekly newsletters, which kept them informed of the production’s progress and brought them inside the filming process with articles about Greengrass’ methods of filming and things like set construction, sound recording and other aspects of moviemaking.  The director also recorded a video message for the families that was viewable in a privately accessible area of the web site.  The result was an open channel of communication between filmmakers and families, which not only kept all mindful of the film’s goals, but also allowed for an ongoing exchange of information.   (“Some of the families have taken to calling it ‘our film,’” Solomon adds.)

                To cover the ground personnel who paid witness to the unfolding tragedy that September day, Greengrass enlisted writer and former 60 Minutes II producer Michael Bronner to conduct a second series of interviews—this time with a wide-ranging group of civilian and military personnel.  As the big picture of the day only began to come clear once geographically dispersed puzzle pieces were assembled, Greengrass knew his narrative would include sequences in several key sites:  the control tower at Newark International Airport (where UA Flight 93 originated and which, because of its location, provides a bird’s-eye-view of Manhattan); Control Centers in Boston (where the hijacked AA Flights 11 and 175 originated) and New York; the Federal Aviation Administration’s operations command center in Herndon, Virginia (under the command of national operations manager Ben Sliney, experiencing his first day in that position on 9/11/01); and the military’s operations center at the Northeast Air Defense Sector (N.E.A.D.S.) in upstate New York.  Bronner’s detailed recounting of the events that morning would play a major part in the construction of Greengrass’ script.

                Additionally, Bronner researched other factual information on everything from the hijackers to the other planes (commercial, military and private) in the air that morning.  Valuable information was also gained from the 9/11 Commission Report; members of that Commission advised on the film prior to the start of principal photography and were present on the set during filming.

                Greengrass explains, “What we did on this film was to gather together an extraordinary array of people wanting to get this film right—aircrew from United Airlines; pilots; the families of the people who were onboard, who gave us their sense of what their family member might have done given the type of person he or she was in any given situation; controllers and members of the military; the 9/11 Commission.  We had a lot of expertise that, in the end, allows you to get a good sense of the general shape of events.”





                Casting was handled primarily out of New York City, with calls going out not only for those actors who resembled the actual people aboard the flight, but also for any performers who may have flight-related experience that could be germane to the characters.  Actors who made it to audition found that Greengrass’ unusual working style was apparent right from the start—no scripts (or “sides”) were provided, and actors were brought into the room in groups, instead of one at a time.  Once inside, they were given minimal information, only that the film concerned United 93.  Chairs were arranged in rows, as on a plane, and the group was then instructed to improv (e.g., getting on the plane, reacting to a hijacker). 

                Actor David Rasche, eventually cast as passenger Donald Freeman Greene, remembers, “The audition process was very mysterious—they just said that it was about United 93, that was it.  It was really interesting to see people going through various stages of hysteria or however they reacted to the situation.  Then they said, ‘Thank you.’  That was it.”  Of the entire audition and filming process, Rasche adds, “Paul has more courage about diving into the complete unknown than (any director) I’ve ever been involved with.  The most difficult thing for me was the convergence of realities—the reality of what Paul thinks happened, then what I think happened…but the truth is no one knows for sure.  It was a challenge and a fascinating work experience.”

                For a director looking to create a believable truth, the verisimilitude of the flight personnel’s actions necessitated a search within the ranks of actual experienced crew members.  Commercial airline pilot JJ Johnson (who has enjoyed a distinguished career with United Airlines) was told about the film by another pilot, who ended up recommending Johnson for the role.  Next thing he knew, Johnson received a call from a casting agent, who wanted to know how quickly he could be in New York for an interview—in his captain’s uniform; Johnson was later cast as UAL 93’s Captain Jason M. Dahl.  Johnson arranged for the five weeks off from United, noting, “They were very supportive of me.”

                The role of First Officer LeRoy Homer was filled by Gary Commock, who has flown commercially (passengers and freight) for just over a decade.  (Both Johnson and Commock—in the course of their work—flew commercial 747s to arrive in London just prior to arriving on the United 93 set.)  Of the five flight attendants on United 93, two—Sandra Bradshaw and Lorraine G. Bay—were played by actresses who had worked as United flight attendants: Trish Gates (still working in the field when cast) and Nancy McDoniel.  Their experience proved invaluable to the other actors, particularly those cast as the three additional flight attendants, who would look to them for advice on in-flight procedures.

                Other roles were also filled by those best equipped for the characters—civilian and military controllers (some of whom had been on duty on 9/11) were interspersed among actors on the sets of the Newark tower, as well as the Herndon, N.E.A.D.S., Boston, New York and Cleveland centers.  Real-life Boston controller Thomas “Tommy” Roberts; military specialist Colin Scoggins; and N.E.A.D.S.’ Major James Fox, Senior Director, Weapons Crew and First Lieutenant Jeremy Powell, Senior Director, Technician, were among those who participated, replaying before the cameras the events they themselves had witnessed first hand nearly five years ago.

                The FAA’s Ben Sliney had initially signed on to work in an advisory capacity.  His nearly three decades of expertise in air traffic control and singular involvement with the events of 9/11(as the man in charge of the FAA’s command center in Herndon) would render him a highly valued asset to Greengrass and his team.  He was then invited to work on-camera during filming, portraying a controller in the New York center.  Ultimately, he was asked to step into the shoes of one of the key players of the day—so Ben Sliney was eventually cast as Ben Sliney.

                The FAA center in Herndon is a unique facility in that it does not communicate directly with aircraft.  Instead, it exercises command authority over the 20 regional air traffic control facilities in the United States, overriding those regional boundaries and facilitating cooperation among the separate entities when the situation calls.  On the morning of September 11, it fell to Sliney to give the order to clear the skies, landing approximately 4,500 commercial and general aviation aircraft within hours, before any more could become involved (at one point, it was believed as many as 11 planes had been hijacked).  Astoundingly, this was accomplished without further incident…and all of this on Sliney’s first day at the job.

                Relating his experience reliving 9/11 for the cameras, Sliney states, “What I was called upon to do for Paul was accurate, in that I would have responded in the way that he wanted me to—albeit it was heightened for the purposes of the film.  But it was factual in the progression of the events, since it was developed using the facts from the 9/11 Commission Report.  I cannot say I was nervous, and I attribute that to being relaxed around Paul, knowing that he had provided the parameters of the scene and you had the freedom to bounce around within those.  I think also, having read the treatment, it seemed to me that the story was about how people in ordinary walks of life—without any guidance from hierarchy or protocol—could all rise to an occasion, which culminated in the ultimate self-sacrifice of the people on United  93.  It was focused and clear, so it was easy to do my job on the set.”

                Production had also begun searching for another important element that would play a key role in the re-creation of the day: a plane.  Fortunately, the production team found a 20-year-old, out-of-service Boeing 757 earmarked for the scrap heap, had it dismantled and shipped to Pinewood Studios outside of London, where United 93 would be filmed.  Then, gleaning instruction from a massive, 9,600-page “owner’s” manual, the production crew began the careful re-assembly of the 140-foot-long fuselage.  Rather than putting it back together as one contiguous piece, however, builders reconstructed the 757 in pull-apart sections (the cockpit, first class and coach cabins).  Each could later be mounted separately on motion gimbals that could simulate the movements of the plane (banking, ascending, descending, turbulence), or assembled back in one piece.  The art department then performed a makeover on the interior, dressing the seats and cabins with period-appropriate, company-issue graphics, fabrics, lights, magazines, even the correct images on the in-flight television monitors—all to replicate, as closely as possible, the appearance of the five-year-old Boeing 757 that took off from Newark on Monday, September 11, and later crashed in a field in Somerset County, Pennsylvania, near the town of Shanksville.              



Research and Fact Gathering


                The filmmakers’ decision to shoot at Pinewood was carefully considered.  Greengrass’ film would be the product of some improvisation, all based on the known facts, and it was felt that in order for the cast to arrive at their own truths about their characters and the events on the plane, there would need to be a removal from the culture where the impact of 9/11 is still keenly and painfully felt—much as a jury in deliberation is separated from the media and immediate influences of the outside world.  During the intense, pre-shoot rehearsal process, as well as during principal photography, a majority of the actors stayed in a hotel near the studio (a few, who were U.K.-based, did return to their homes). 

                Once they had been signed to their parts, each actor was given a dossier (the product of the researchers and the family input) on the person they would be portraying.  These files contained photos, information from the family (What kind of person was he/she?) and practical facts (How did this person get to the airport?  What clothing was he/she wearing?).  Some of the actors’ research processes included their own personal outreach to the family, while some preferred to develop the character simply with the research provided.     

                There was an acknowledgement—from the actors and the families—of the difficulty of re-creating a real person who, in the final moments of life, had been subjected to an unthinkable ordeal.  Both groups were respectful of the burdens and responsibilities of the other and only interacted if the willingness to communicate was shared by all.

                Lorna Dallas, cast as passenger Linda Gronlund, exchanged several phone calls with Linda’s sister, Elsa, and later met with her and Gronlund’s mother, who closed their meeting with a toast to her “new daughter.”  Dallas says, after given permission to make the call to Elsa, “I felt at that point that I was talking to my own sister.  She made me feel very comfortable.  We laughed and cried on the phone—she wanted to know about me, and I told her a few things, told her about my background.  And then, it started coming out from her, about Linda .  And it was just spilling out—the time on the phone didn’t matter.  The minutes just flew by.  I had several phone calls with Elsa, and each time, new things came up.”

                A trusting bond built, Elsa later shared her sister’s last call with the actor.  Dallas reflects, “When I heard it, it was rather harrowing and rather humbling to know that someone who knew that the end was very near could have such forethought, such strength to say what she did.  She told Elsa  exactly where to go for her will.  And she ended that phone call with ‘I love you.’  It took great guts to say what she did on that phone.  And it took great guts for Elsa  to play it for me…and it will haunt me for the rest of my life.  But I will also treasure the thought, and be grateful of the strength of that woman that was shared with me.”

                Peter Hermann, signed to play passenger Jeremy Glick, comments, “This is incredibly tender territory that’s been entrusted to us.  I mean, it’s an incredible act of trust, as a family member who lost someone on United 93, to give this over, to say, ‘Yes, you can portray my husband.’  That’s a huge thing.  And I think it really helped to be isolated as a cast, that we didn’t disperse at night…and I don’t know what it would have been like to make this movie in the States.”

                For Cheyenne Jackson, portraying passenger Mark Bingham brought great responsibility and challenges.  He explains, “Early on, they gave us the option to contact family members, and I was really torn about that decision.  On one hand, it was a great opportunity to talk to the people that knew these people better than anybody.  And on the other hand, it seemed rather daunting.  I was pretty trepidatious.  But, I did decide to reach out via e-mail to Mark’s mom, and she was lovely.  And it was just what I needed.  It was supportive, and it was open—she’s a no-nonsense kind of gal, and I really appreciated that.  Also I talked to a former partner of his, and also his dad.  The whole idea of trying to capture somebody’s spirit, somebody’s essence, though, has been overwhelming.”

                Of the phone calls those on United 93 made—like the one from Linda Gronlund to her sister (scripts for which were provided to the actors for use during filming)—Christian Clemenson (who plays passenger Thomas E. Burnett, Jr.) comments, “I’ve read the transcripts or what people recollect of all the phone calls and what strikes me about all of them is how calm these people were.  That is astounding to me.  Tolstoy  wrote that the aim of art is to state the question clearly—it’s not to provide answers.  And I think that’s what Paul is doing with this movie.”

                The practical research by both Solomon and Bronner also played a part in the costuming of the film, with history helping to determine what the flight crews on United Airlines planes wore in 2001.  The type of person each passenger was (again determined from information provided by the family members) was factored into clothing choices for their characters.  And as with the outfitting of the plane, reality was the overriding concern for determining the final clothing looks for all.     

                Once assembled at Pinewood, the cast who comprised United 93’s passengers and crew began their arduous journey together by embarking upon an intensive, two-week rehearsal process.  Having digested the background research on their characters, they were now to become those characters involved in a harrowing situation.  Much like a stage play (only without a majority of dialogue scripted), the actors would board the plane—the reconstructed, re-dressed Boeing 757—and sit in their assigned seats.  The planes’ doors would be shut and those aboard would re-enact the 91-minute flight in real time…from take off to the descent over Pennsylvania.  These improvisations were executed within certain parameters, such as the times of known events (e.g., the mundane first 46 minutes of the flight, the takeover of the plane, air-to-ground communications) and the “makeup” of their characters (e.g., leader or follower).  Times were called out during improv and filming, to give the actors a framework on which to shape their communal drama.  Executed repeatedly, with various sequences of the improv revisited over and over during the course of the two weeks, Greengrass’ goal of the “plausible truth” began to emerge.

                Greengrass explains, “We improvised based on the known events.  And all the time we were engaged in a debate about how believable it was.  How might a group of young men have reacted in this situation?  How might more elderly people on that airplane have reacted?  How might the flight attendants have reacted?  You know, those are the questions that we discussed and tried to arrive at a workable solution in an improvisatory style.”

                Olivia Thirlby (playing passenger Nicole Carol Miller) reasons, “Working with improvisation has been appropriate for this project and for this subject matter.  We just have no way of knowing the events that happened on the plane.  There would be no way to script it in a way that would end up seeming realistic.  This is such touchy subject matter—and I think that if it’s not going to be truthful and it’s not going to seem real, then there’s just no point in doing it.”

                Susan Blommaert (playing passenger Jane Folger) adds, “I feel like Paul is anti-sensationalist and an anti-sentimentalist.  It was always about trying to create, as honestly as we possibly can, what could have happened on that plane.  There was no pretense to make it anything other than that.  I think that has really been inspirational to all of us, and I think the only way that you can feel justified in doing this movie.”

                 Marceline Hugot (playing passenger Georgine Rose Corrigan) offers, “Paul basically wanted us to respect profoundly who we were representing.  Learn as much or as little as was available about the person and embody that, making decisions within that framework.  It became a marriage between an actor and a person who lived, breathed, had a full life and tragically ended up in a horrible, horrible situation.  So it was about trying to re-create that for myself, and then, way beyond…for the family.  It’s surprising how simple, not simplistic, a process it really is.  And to have a director encourage that clarity and simpleness of heart is rare…and I’m hoping the film’s as powerful to see as it has been to do.”

                Greengrass sought to keep the rehearsal process truthful.  Since the onboard conflict was literally a deadly contest of “us against them,” the director kept the four U.K.-based actors who were cast as the plane’s young hijackers separate from the 40 passengers and crew—and introduced them as late in the game as he could.  These actors had also been provided with factual information about their characters, including the written instructions for their mission from the leader of the 9/11 plot, Mohamed Atta.  Additionally, they were given intense, accelerated physical training from martial arts experts.

                All through pre-production and rehearsal, Greengrass had been developing a “shooting script” which listed scenes and action.  Also, verified dialogue of ground and flight personnel was included.  After the culmination of the rehearsal process, the scenes aboard the plane were fleshed out with a great deal of description of the action, but only a few bits of key dialogue—the remainder would be provided during the filmed sequences out of the reality created during on-camera improvisation.  


Principal Photography


                Principal photography of United 93 began in mid-November, on the sets that the actors had come to know very well during the time spent in rehearsal.  The first scenes shot involved the entire plane.  As previously, the plane was boarded with the doors sealed—and filmed takes varied in duration, from anywhere between a few to as many as 40 minutes.  Filming was executed by two camera operators who, along with sound men and an assistant director, would run up and down the length of the set at the direction of Greengrass, communicating with them from outside the plane through microphones and earpieces.  (The final task of making a seamless film from these different segments would fall to Greengrass and his team of three editors.)

                Next, scenes were completed in the separate cabins—first economy, then first-class.  The harrowing last minutes fighting for control of the plane were shot separately, with the cockpit fixed to a computer-controlled hydraulic gimbal—designed in cooperation with the special effects department—which pitched and rolled in simulation of a plane spiraling out of control.

                Even with all of the rehearsal, scenarios and objectives still continued to be refined.   Peter Hermann remembers a take at the end of a full day:  “By the time that we’d got to shooting the final scenes in that contained space, we were incredibly tired and there was a lot of accumulated adrenaline.  I think that, in a sense, it’s those moments that become a real luxury, because the objective is so clear:  get in that door, and get anybody who’s in the way out of the way.  It just becomes so basic and so clear.”

                The first-class section was later fitted into a rotating gimbal, which could turn the cabin 180 degrees during the filming of the final scenes, as the plane is making its last (and very steep) dive.  To lessen the chances of injury, the seat frames, backs and armrests were refitted with soft foam in place of the hard plastic and metal.  Stunt performers were originally intended to stand in for the cast in these scenes, but the actors wished to execute the work themselves.  With extra padding built into their costumes, they successfully completed their own stunts.

                Greengrass observes, “That final image haunts me—a physical struggle for the controls of a gasoline-fueled 21st-century flying machine between a band of suicidal religious fanatics and a group of innocents drawn at random from amongst us all…I think of it often.  It’s really, in a way, the struggle for our world today.”

                On the filming of the final sequences between the hijackers and the hijacked, Kate Jennings Grant (playing passenger Lauren Catuzzi Grandcolas) observes, “It was astounding to me that as actors (and we know what’s going to happen), there was still something in us that was also in those passengers:  the undeniably human—and I’d like to think American—urge to cling to hope.  You cling and you fight because life is extraordinary.  One life is extraordinary and worth it.  In those moments where I started to collapse from exhaustion crawling up that aisle, I would think of Lauren,  and I would think of my family and all those I would be flying home to…and I kept going and going and going.”

                Filming on the sets of the control centers and towers was given the same attention to improvisational truth and detail—all executed within the parameters of actual timing and known fact.  Whether Greengrass’ cameras were focused on one screen, one individual or the entire facility, all actors were engaged, performing and reacting in every take—even if what they did was clearly out of frame.

                Sometimes, the convergence of the filmic world and the real world proved to be a near overwhelming experience for those involved.  As a real-life flight attendant for United, Trish Gates had been pulled from her original assignment to work a Newark/Los Angeles flight two days before September 11.  The day prior, she had worked a trip up to Portland, where she was grounded for five days following.  She remembered a poster that showed the faces of the crew members killed on September 11—in particular, the face of Sandra Bradshaw, the woman she was cast to portray.  Gates tells, “The first two weeks of rehearsal, I was busy trying to make sure that everything looked real and that all of the attendants were doing the right thing.  Then, I felt the responsibility that she was an actual person the day we started shooting—it hit me.  I looked again at all the information and the pictures, and I felt this enormous responsibility to do right by her…to do the best job that I could.  Before every take, I would look at this little family portrait and think about her children—the youngest one doesn’t have a memory of her, and that just broke my heart.”

                It is that very convergence of realities—resulting in a communally discovered truth—that compels Paul Greengrass to make films like United 93.  He closes, “I hope that people see that this film has been made in a serious way by serious people trying to do a difficult thing, which is to explore a very painful event—and that it’s been done in a dignified way and that what we present is a believable truth.  If we do that, well, I will feel that we’ve done as best we can.  September 11, no matter where you are on the political spectrum, changed our world.  It forced us to confront the way our world is going, and it presented us with some hard choices.  That’s what a film needs to do, to help us understand some of those things…but also, of course, to take us to the heart of the human stories of those involved.”

                Universal Pictures and StudioCanal Present in Association with Sidney Kimmel Entertainment A Working Title Production of A Paul Greengrass Film:  United 93.  The casting is by Amanda Mackey CSA, Cathy Sandrich Gelfond CSA, John Hubbard, Dan Hubbard, Sig De Miguel.  The music is by John Powell; line producer is Mairi Bett.  The costume designer is Dinah Collin.  The production designer is Dominic Watkins.  The editors are Clare Douglas, Christopher Rouse ACE, Richard Pearson.  The director of photography is Barry Ackroyd BSC.  The executive producers are Debra Hayward and Liza Chasin.  The film is produced by Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, Lloyd Levin and Paul Greengrass.  United 93 is written and directed by Paul Greengrass.  ©2006 Universal Pictures.




                On September 24, 2002, Congress passed the Flight 93 National Memorial Act.  The Act created a new national park unit to “commemorate the passengers and crew of Flight 93 who, on September 11, 2001, courageously gave their lives, thereby thwarting a planned attack on our Nation’s Capital.”  The memorial will be developed near Shanksville, Pennsylvania, where Flight 93 crashed on September 11, 2001.

                When completed, Flight 93 National Memorial will encompass 2,200 acres, almost 1,300 acres of which will be dedicated to the design features, and 900 acres will be protected through partnerships with local residents and groups.

                The Flight 93 National Memorial project is making history as the first national park designed entirely through an open, public competition.  The yearlong, international competition received more than 1,000 submissions created by professionals and members of the general public.  The National Park Service is the steward of the Flight 93 National Memorial.

                The final design selection for the Flight 93 National Memorial (announced September 7, 2005) was created by Paul Murdoch Architects, a Los Angeles-based firm.  A diverse jury comprised of family members, community representatives and design professionals chose the winning design because it most completely exemplifies the mission statement for the memorial.  This mission statement grew out of hundreds of responses to a public survey and countless hours of discussion by families of the passengers and crew, community residents, national experts and National Park Service staff.

                The Flight 93 National Memorial’s mission statement is “A common field one day.  A field of honor forever.  May all who visit this place remember the collective acts of courage and sacrifice of the passengers and crew, revere this hallowed ground as the final resting place of those heroes, and reflect on the power of individuals who choose to make a difference.”

                To find out more or to make a contribution to the Flight 93 Memorial Fund, please visit






                 Christian Adams was from Beibelsheim, Germany, where he lived with his wife Silke and their two children.  He joined the German Wine Institute in 1989 and became Export Marketing Director in 1995. 

                Christian had been visiting the States for two wine tastings.


                Lorraine G. Bay, Flight Attendant, was born in Philadelphia on July 20, 1943.  Her family said, “In the midst of the most destructive war, she was a bright star who gave family and friends something positive and beautiful to talk about.”

                After graduating from Neshaminy High School in 1961, she joined a community Senior Drum and Bugle Corps as part of the Color Guard.  She enjoyed the sense of camaraderie and belonging for two years.  Lorraine also worked in the office of Reedman Car Dealership in Langhorne, Pennsylvania, until the lure of the vast skies of United Airlines beckoned in 1964.

                Lorraine trained at O’Hare Airport in Chicago and then began her long career as a flight attendant.  Humor was always part of Lorraine’s life, even if the joke was on her.  On her first short flight, Lorraine’s plane landed before she had even finished serving lunch.  In her helpful, but inexperienced way, she had taken the time to unwrap each sandwich rather than just giving it to the passengers.  She soon learned to efficiently complete her tasks in the allotted time, but never lost her delightful way of always looking at life through the prism of laughter.  Her uncle and aunt said, “It was always fun talking to Lorraine about her flights and the many interesting and sometimes famous people who passed in and out of her life.  Even if a trip was miserable, her stories about it always ended with a smile.”

                Lorraine married Erich Bay in 1973.  The couple lived in East Windsor, New Jersey.  Although they had no children of their own, they were very close with their nephew, Marc.  Erich remembers Lorraine as a caring, loving and organized person:  she would get birthday cards out to people in advance and was always buying presents for people. 

                Friends and fellow flight attendants Mary and Terry said Lorraine was “like an angel among them.”


                Todd Beamer grew up in the Chicago suburbs.  He was an account manager for Oracle and lived in Cranbury, New Jersey, with his wife, Lisa, and their two children, David and Drew. 

                His parents, Peggy and David, remember Todd as a friendly, popular child.  In junior high school, his class teacher asked the children to write down the person they’d most like to sit next to.  As she collected every child’s paper, she realized they all said, “Todd.”   

                Todd was an extremely organized child at an early age.  He made lists of things he’d have to take to school the next day.  But he also had a great sense of humor.  He would often tease his younger sister, Michele, who was six years his junior—a playful trait that carried over to adulthood.

                Todd graduated with a master’s degree in business administration.  He met his wife, Lisa, in 1991, and they married in 1994.  By September 11, 2001, they were expecting their third child, Morgan.  Todd had a love of life and loved being with his family.  He was laid-back, humble but competitive. 

                According to David, Todd’s genuine nature made him a good salesman:  his customers trusted him and he respected them. 

                A keen sportsman and a good all-rounder, he had a passion for basketball and baseball.  As a sports fan, he supported the Cubs, Bulls and Bears. 

                Michele, his sister, said that Todd “was a big encourager, a relationship builder; he really listened with his face and made you feel like the most important person in the world.”

                He was a strong Christian and taught Sunday school at the local church.  He loved to work with children and carried on his interest in sports by playing softball with the church team.


                Alan Anthony Beaven died the day after his wedding anniversary, flying back to California to prosecute one more water pollution case before taking a sabbatical in India to volunteer his services as an environmental lawyer.  For many years, Alan taught and practiced public interest law in New Zealand, London, New York and San Francisco.  He became a leading environmental lawyer, successfully taking on cases that other lawyers would refuse.  He recognized injustice and, despite the risks, he was driven to correct it whenever he could.

                Above his desk a Post-it note read, “Fear, who cares?”  For everyone who knew Alan, this was his principle in the courtroom as well as in his life, whether in a fierce tennis match or while playing with his children.  Often, he would encourage Sonali and her small friends to climb tall trees, steep cliffs and rocks.  To a four-year-old, he would gently but firmly guide her by saying, “Keep your head held high and courage in your eye.  Remember, the rock is your friend.”

                Alan met his wife Kimi in 1990 while they were both abroad.  The following year they ran into each other in New York City and immediately fell in love.  They got married in 1993.

                Alan was very playful and loving.  His children, John, Chris and Sonali, knew this well.  As John pitched for his college baseball team, Alan was his biggest supporter.  He relished going on scuba dives with Chris.  He could spend hours reading, wrestling, playing, building tree houses and dressing dolls with them.  The children all adored Alan.

                The combination of Alan’s casual and playful demeanor, his sharp intellect, his spirituality and complete fearlessness always prepared him to take the right action.  He never just stood by in life.  He loved life and embraced it fully.  Alan was pure love in action.

                Alan’s presence continues to touch the lives of people who knew him, especially his children.  He was very proud of them.  To this day, Sonali exhibits the same courage taught to her by Alan—still climbing rocks and trees, and repeating words of encouragement, now to her friends.  She has an indomitable spirit and aspires to act on behalf of the environment like her father.  Chris is a beautiful reflection of Alan’s work ethic and kindness.  John embodies Alan’s strength—an inspiration to his friends and colleagues of what matters most…of not letting fear dictate your life.


                Mark Bingham was a rugby player, a daredevil and a lover of life.  At 31, he had close friends of every nationality, race and color:  male and female, young and old, straight and gay.

                Raised in West Palm Beach and Miami, Florida, Southern California, Monterey and Silicon Valley, he graduated as captain of his rugby team from Los Gatos High School in 1988.  He stitched easily into the diverse tapestry of students at University of California, Berkeley, and helped the Cal Bears rugby team take two of a string of annual National Rugby Championships (collecting a few more stitches and broken bones along the way).  He made good use of his slightly outrageous social skills and international relations schooling at Cal by working with public relations firms in San Francisco and the South San Francisco Bay area in the 1990s, finally organizing his own PR company, The Bingham Group.

                Prophetically, Mark spent the summer of 2001 as if it were his last.  He and a few of the same friends who had jumped off cliffs in Hawaii together months before, ventured to Europe to goof off as tourists and run with the bulls in Pamplona.

                On the morning of September 11, 2001, he was commuting to work between his New York and San Francisco offices and to attend the wedding of a close Muslim friend.  Always a sportsman and a competitive guy, quick to jump to the aid of those in need, on that ugly morning he found himself among strong, able new friends for the most horrific challenge of his short life.

                Within a few days after September 11, 2001, Senator John McCain spoke at a memorial service for Mark on the Cal Berkeley campus.  Mark was posthumously lauded as The Advocate’s 2001 Person of the Year.  Senator Barbara Boxer honored him in a ceremony for San Francisco Bay Area victims, presenting a folded American flag to Mark’s former partner.  Singer Melissa Etheridge dedicated her song “Tuesday Morning” to Mark’s memory.

                In Mark’s honor, the International Gay Rugby Association and Board’s biennial international rugby competition aimed predominantly for gay and bisexual men was named the Bingham Cup and first hosted by Mark’s team, the San Francisco Fog, in 2002.  London, and Rugby, England were sites for the Bingham Cup 2004.  New York City is bracing itself for the Bingham Cup 2006.

                Deora Frances Bodley grew up in San Diego, California.  As a high school student, she visited local high schools to discuss HIV/AIDS with her peers.  She volunteered with the Special Olympics and a local animal shelter.  Chris Schuck, her English teacher at La Jolla Country Day School, recalls:  “Deora was always thinking big and going after big game.”

                At the time of her death, Ms. Bodley was studying psychology at Santa Clara University.  She coordinated volunteers in a literacy program for elementary school students.  Kathy Almazol, principal at St. Clare Catholic Elementary, recalls Ms. Bodley had “a phenomenal ability to work with people, including the children she read to, her peer volunteers, the school administrators and teachers.  We have 68 kids who had a personal association with Deora.”

                In the words of her mother, Deborah Borza, “Deora has always been about peace.’’

At the tender age of 11 years, Deora wrote in her journal, “People ask who, what, where, when, why, how.  I ask peace.’’ A warm and generous person, Deora was a gifted student and a wonderful friend.  Wherever she went, her light shined brightly.

                Deora’s father, Derrill Bodley, of Stockton, CA, feels her life was about “getting along” and sharing a message of peace.  At 11 years old, Deora’s sister Murial recalls Deora teaching her many things and says, “Most of all she taught me to be kind to other people and animals.  I cherish the memories of my sister and plan to work hard in school and in everything I do so she can be proud of me like I am of her.”


                Flight Attendant Sandra Bradshaw, 38, grew up on her family’s farm in North Carolina.

                In 1989, after several years in secretarial work, she started flying for US Airways, but due to cutbacks, she was laid off five months later.  Sandy married husband Phil (a US Airways pilot) in October 1990.  Then, in December 1990, she began flying for United Airlines.

                Phil and Sandy lived in Greensboro, North Carolina, in a house they designed together, only 30 minutes from where she grew up.  She was a very bubbly, outgoing person who loved to travel, but she also had strong roots at home.  Her four best friends were from her hometown.  They had all gone to the same school and were known locally as the five musketeers.

                Sandy and Phil traveled the world together, finally settling down to have children in 1998, when daughter Alex was born.  They had Nathan two years later.  Once she was a mother, Sandy cut back her flying hours to four days a months (two trips to the West Coast and back).  She used the trips to maintain her independence.  She loved to fly and the layovers provided a chance to relax and catch up on magazines and time alone.  As well as Nathan and Alex, Sandy was also stepmother to Phil’s daughter Shenan.

                Sandy had a wonderful smile and a quick wit.  She was a fun-loving girl.  Phil Bradshaw said, “We had a great relationship.  It’s something I will always cherish.”


                Marion R. Britton was a bubbly person who loved to be involved in life.  She could tell a great story and her brother, Paul Britton, said she “held the family archive inside her head.”  She knew all the tales that had been passed down to her or that she had heard at family gatherings.  She loved to make people laugh, but could also move people to tears with her stories.

                Marion was an extremely generous person.  She would take a bag of Brooklyn bagels to meetings to share with colleagues.  This was a trait that her brother Paul thinks came from their mother.  They grew up in a house where the front door was always open and extra places always set for dinner.  It was never a surprise to have people stay over on the sitting room floor.

                Marion could be very opinionated and self-assured.  When she knew she was right, she didn’t back down.  She was streetwise and dealt with people from all areas of life in her work at the census bureau, where she had made her way up through the ranks to assistant director.  Marion had carried out interviews everywhere from the rough prisons in New York to door-to-door on the streets.

                Marion believed in social justice.  She thought people should have what they needed and have the opportunity for joy in their lives.  Her other passion was food.  She searched out the best restaurants and organized an eating club that would meet for breakfast before work.  She traveled around a lot, so she’d scout out places and then take friends and family there.  Paul said that it was great, but also slightly annoying because she’d insist they travel an hour for dinner because she’d found a new restaurant that they must try!  “But we always got a great meal at the end of the journey,” he adds.

                Work colleagues recalled that she was so dedicated to her job that she’d come in early and on the weekends.  She was on her way to a work conference in San Francisco with colleague, Waleska Martinez, on September 11, 2001.


                Thomas E. Burnett, Jr. (May 29, 1963 – September 11, 2001) had skills and maturity that far exceeded his 38 years.  He had the respect and admiration of all who knew him.  He was bright, driven and competitive.  He loved a competition, in anything.  He liked to win, and usually did.  But he did this in a way that elevated those around him.  He had a keen wit and always helped to lighten any situation with his humor.  He had high ideals and principles, and he expected a great deal of himself, and of others.  He had a very strong sense of right and wrong and was solidly rooted in the strength of his convictions.

                Tom had an innate ability to gather information, assess situations and react quickly to resolve them.  He attributed his success to the fact he always made sure the odds were in his bringing in other people when necessary.

                He was a man’s man—not in a way that wears machismo like a tattoo, but in the strength of his character, in the courage of his convictions, in the depth of his love for his family, in his modesty and reticence to self-aggrandize, in the moment-to-moment expressions of his nimble mind and quick wit, in his easy and seamless fit into the form of a leader of people, and in the depth of his faith.

                All of this is high praise.  Tom would be embarrassed by what he would call hyperbole, for he believed in the judicious and measured use of language, saving exceptional words for exceptional people or things.

                This is exactly what I have done.

                I know I speak not just for myself, but for the entire family, his friends, colleagues and indeed the entire nation:  Tom, we love you, we miss you and we thank you.

                Born and raised in Bloomington, Minnesota, Tom attended public schools Ridgeview Elementary, Olson Middle School and graduated with honors from Thomas Jefferson High School. 

                Wearing number 11 in high school, Tom played quarterback for the Jefferson Jaguars and was recruited to play football by several universities and chose Saint John’s University in Collegeville, Minnesota.  He enjoyed the conversations and discourse with the Benedictine monks who lived there, and often said his experience provided incredible depth to his faith in God.  After two years, an injury shortened his football career and he transferred to the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota.  He was named president of the Alpha Kappa Psi Fraternity, then later graduated with a B.S. degree in finance.  Working with Thoratec, a medical device company, he climbed the ladder to corporate success quickly.  He received an M.B.A. from Pepperdine University and was making plans to work on his doctorate.

                Tom often joked that he was one of the last Renaissance men left.  He enjoyed a variety of interests that ranged from hunting, fishing and golfing to fine wines, cigars and travel.  He could engage you in a conversation about the ideas of ancient Greek philosophers and leave you sitting in the dust when debating political issues.  At the same time, he cherished his time with his father on “the farm,” used as a hunting lodge retreat, near Siren, Wisconsin.

                Tom was an avid reader, often choosing a subject and reading as many books on the subject as possible.  During the past five years, his subjects included American wars as well as Presidents of the United States.  His most recent subject was Winston Churchill.  He had busts of Teddy Roosevelt, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln and Winston Churchill in his office.  When I asked why he wanted them, he replied, “The lives they led and the decisions they made were uncommon.  I see them and am reminded of the importance of doing what is right in the face of adversity.”

                Tom had a goal to retire from business at the age of 40 and often spoke of plans that ranged from teaching to running for political office.  If he had made a career change, he would have done so superbly, but he was much too good at running a company and would have always had increasingly tempting opportunities that would have competed with that dream.

                Tom had a strong attachment to his family and felt a deep bond to his mother, father and sisters.  He loved his wife dearly and he adored his three young daughters, believing them to be it should be.  —Deena Burnett

                As we all know on September 11, 2001, a horrible chain of events and a great tragedy befell New York City, Washington and Pennsylvania and was felt all over the world.


                On United Flight 93, my husband, William Joseph “Billy” Cashman, along with the other passengers and crew members, were courageous and heroic in giving up their lives in bringing down that plane before it hit its target.  Although they are definitely heroes, all the other victims who perished that tragic day are also heroes in my heart, as they gave the greatest sacrifice anyone could give…and it should never, never be forgotten.

                My husband Billy was a devoted and loving husband to me for 31 years and also a wonderful, caring and generous person who was snatched from my life on that terrible day in September.  Not being blessed with children of our own, we had many nieces and nephews who idolized him and now have many memories to dwell upon throughout their lives, as he made each of them feel special when we were together.

                Billy was a special guy.  Some people thought he looked like Clint Eastwood.  There was some physical resemblance, but more of a likeness to the Eastwood image.  Billy was soft-spoken, principled, strong physically and morally.  We both grew up on the west side of Manhattan and after we got married we moved to New Jersey.  Billy served his country in the United States Army with the 101st Airborne Division.  He had a red belt in karate and had many interests in life, especially hiking.  On that terrible day in September he was on his way to Yosemite Park with a few friends.

                He was an ironworker, lather and licensed welder and was employed with Local 46 in New York City.  He also taught welding to the apprentices of the union a few nights a week.  Ironically, Billy was part of the construction team that helped build the World Trade Center in the ’60s and if he was not on that plane, he would have been down at ground zero helping the firemen and police because of his skills.  On Flight 93, Billy did not carry his cellphone with him, but I know in my heart that he was not just sitting in his seat.

                There have been many memorials for my husband and listening to everyone speak highly of him, I was and always will be proud to be his wife.  He is greatly missed by me, family and friends.  Maggie Cashman


                Georgine Rose Corrigan was born on April 24, 1946.  She was a Taurus and, like her daughter Laura, born in the year of the dog in Chinese Astrology.  Georgine grew up in a small town, Woodville, Ohio.  She was the eldest of three children.

                She took a degree in art.  After graduation, she worked in the banking business in Toledo.  She moved to Honolulu in 1976 with her young daughter Laura to take up a new job.  Although the job fell through, Georgine was determined to make things work.  They stayed at a hotel in Waikiki and she worked as a relief teller in a bank.  Later they moved into a one-bedroom apartment together and settled into life on the island.

                As time went on, Georgine became an antiques dealer.  She loved searching for new stock and setting up her stall and interacting with her customers.  As well as her antiques business, she was always dreaming up ideas for new gadgets to be used in everyday life.  She was artistic and painted on glass and designed jewelry.

                Georgine, a single mom, raised her daughter Laura while holding down two jobs, but she always had enough time to be with Laura.  When she was young, Georgine took her and her friends roller skating for Laura’s birthday.  She didn’t just drop them at the rink, she put on boots and taught them tricks and whipped them between her legs.  She was always fun and part of the action.  Laura was the envy of her girlfriends, everyone wanted a mom like Georgine.

                Later in life she moved in with her daughter, who described her mother as her best friend and a devoted grandmother.  She was especially close to Laura’s son, Dylan.

                Georgine was an eternal optimist and people were drawn to her.  Her daughter said, “Everybody who met her loved her.  People held her longer in a hug because they felt good around her.”


                Patricia Cushing was 69 years old, but she didn’t look it.  She was born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland.  Her daughter Pegeen said what a classy lady her mother was—well-spoken, polite and always immaculately turned out.

                She and husband Thomas raised five children together in Bayonne, New Jersey, where she had relocated after getting married.  They had three boys (Thomas, John and David) and two daughters (Alicia and Pegeen).

                Patricia loved to laugh.  She was a very warm person and didn’t often raise her voice.  She had a very soothing personality that stood her in very good stead during her career as a sales rep for New Jersey Bell (now Verizon).  It was Patricia’s patience with people that led the company to promote her to troubleshooter within the customer relations side of the business.  She could always deal with difficult customers with calmness and decorum.

                Since the death of her husband, Patricia had developed a close friendship with her sister-in-law, Jane Folger, with whom she was traveling on September 11, 2001.  They were embarking on a holiday to California.  While in New York, the two of them enjoyed shows and galleries and shopping.  Patricia had retired in 1999 and was enjoying her free time with Jane exploring NYC and shopping for bargains.  They planned to see shows in California, visit galleries and explore a new city.  It was the first time to the West Coast for both of them.


                Captain Jason M. Dahl (November 2, 1957, San Jose, CA – September 11, 2001, Pennsylvania, PA) was the youngest child of Duane and Mildred Dahl.  His siblings are Lowell Dahl, Ken Dahl (died January, 10, 1971 in Vietnam), Carol Dahl Heiderich and Joan Dahl Raymundo.

                Jason grew up in the house on Haga Drive in San Jose, where his mother still resides.  Jason formed bonds with many people early in his childhood.

                Jason was baptized at First Methodist Church in Campbell, California.  He was an active member of Faith Lutheran Church and was confirmed on May 21, 1972.

                Jason attended Hillsdale Elementary School from 1962 to 1968; Sylvandale Junior High from 1968 to 1971; and Andrew Hill High School from 1971 to 1975.  He attended San Jose State University from 1975 to 1980.  He graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in aeronautical operations in June 1980.

                During junior high, Jason developed an interest in building radio-controlled airplanes.  He would fly these planes with his friend, Roger.  He joined Civil Air Patrol and soon was taking flying lessons from Amelia Reid at Reid Hillview Airport.  Jason soloed soon after his 16th birthday in January, 1974.  A picture was taken of Jason and his dad in front of a Cessna.  Jason wrote “maybe someday this will be a 747” on the photo before giving it to his dad.  These seemed like high hopes at the time.

                During high school Jason developed a love for photography.  He worked on the yearbook in high school and even began his college career as an art major with an emphasis in photography.  Jason worked in his dad’s business, Dahl’s Dairy Delivery, delivering ice cream and milk to schools in Franklin-McKinley School District.

                Jason collected friends along his journey in life.  Teachers often became good friends.  While at SJSU, Jason developed close, lasting relationships with several college buddies.  The six of them remain friends to this day.  In college, they all worked pumping fuel at Reid Hillview Airport in order to have money for rental planes and their own fuel bill.

                They were part of the Flying 20’s at SJSU and participated in events together.  Other jobs Jason held while working his way through college were flying advertising banners, aerial photo surveys and teaching private flying lessons.

                After graduation from college, Jason was hired by Ron Nelson Construction as a corporate pilot.  He applied to commercial airlines and got the call from United in June of 1985.  He was ecstatic!

                Jason married Gayle Hartshorn in 1981 and Jason Matthew Dahl, Jr. (Matt) was born in March of 1986.

                Jason moved to Denver in 1989.  While moving up the ranks at United, he was offered the position of flight instructor in the training center.  Although Jason loved to fly, working at the training center allowed him to spend more time with his family.  Jason balanced the two very well.

                Jason married Sandy Guy on September 14, 1996.  (This was a year and a half after his dad died and on what would have been his parents’ 51st wedding anniversary.) Sandy had a teenage daughter, Jennifer, and Jason loved having a “sister” for Matt.  Family was very important to Jason, and he made extreme attempts to get everyone together.  He was also a romantic.  Before he died, he’d been planning an elaborate celebration for his fifth wedding anniversary with wife Sandy.

                Jason was quite a handyman and helped all his neighbors with any home improvement projects they began.  His friends said all they had to do was ask if they could borrow his ladder and Jason would be around to help with the whole job.

                On September 11, 2001, Jason M. Dahl, devoted son, brother, father, husband and Captain of United Airlines Flight 93, lost his life and the lives of his crew and passengers at the hands of a terrorist attack.


                My brother, Joseph DeLuca, was a wonderful person.  He had many friends who truly enjoyed his friendship.  He loved seeing people happy, and he had a great passion for life.

                My brother worked for Pfizer as a systems business consultant, and I was told how much all his co-workers loved working with him.  He was wonderful with his step-grandchildren.  He loved doing artwork, particularly his sketches of Raymond the Cat, and loved belonging to the Sports Car Club of America and also racing his car.

                He collected rocks, loved to travel and loved pets.  He also collected coins and had a yellow Morgan Roadster.

                Most of all, I remember him for his great sense of humor and his compassion for others.  He had lots of wisdom and was a very bright person, too.

                Before he died, I saw him help my Mom when she was ill.  He did so much to help my father prepare for everything that needed to be done.  I was so proud of him.

                I’m so happy the life he lived was a very good one.  Carol Hughes (Joe’s sister)


                Patrick Joseph “Joe” Driscoll was always charming, said his daughter Pam.  He had served in the Navy during the Korean War and then went on to graduate first in his class from the New York University School of Engineering, earning a master’s degree in computer science from Rutgers University.

                He really loved Ireland and had been going back there every year to trace their family history.  His grandchildren were very important to him, as were all his family.  On the last trip to Ireland, he was joined by his daughter, Pam, her husband and their children.  He passed on all that he had learned about their heritage.

                He lived in Manalapan, New Jersey, with his beloved wife, Maureen.  They had four children.  He and his wife were opposites in many ways.  He loved walking holidays, she liked to relax on the beach, but they both made compromises for each other and were still completely in love after 40 years together.

                Joe was a traditional guy who believed in hard work, family and the church.  He volunteered in Manalapan as a sports coach and was a well-known figure in the community.

                He walked almost every day and did two big hiking trips a year.  On September 11, 2001, he was on his way to Yosemite National Park in California for one of these trips with his friend, Billy Cashman.


                A graduate of Colgate University and Cornell University, Edward P. Felt (November 9, 1959 – September 11, 2001) built a solid foundation on which to launch his lifelong passion for learning.  Having earned a number of U.S. Patents and the respect of colleagues, Edward was one of our nation’s leading computer engineers specializing in cryptology when 9/11 struck.

                Edward possessed a unique ability to communicate with colleagues in his highly technical professional world, as well as with students and young professionals eager to view the world of computer technology with fresh eyes.

                Edward found balance in his life and knew that no role he played was more important than that of father and husband.  He understood that his greatest legacy would not come from his professional endeavors, but from his children and the endeavors of the next generation.

                On September 11, 2001, Edward was one of 40 passengers and crew murdered aboard United Airlines Flight 93 as they participated in a revolt against terrorists intent on crashing their plane into our nation’s Capitol.  Fully understanding that their lives were forfeit, these 40 individuals chose to fight and win the first victory in our country’s war against terrorism.


                Jane Claire Cushing Folger was born on June 12, 1928, in Bayonne, New Jersey.  She was the fourth of five children.  Jane’s youngest brother, Charles (“Chuckle”), died from diabetes at an early age, as did her father.  After Mr. Cushing’s death, the family struggled financially.  Mrs. Cushing left the role of homemaker to run the family’s retail business, which she did successfully until late in life, when she turned over the business to her only surviving son, Thomas.

                Jane was the youngest of the three Cushing girls.  As children, they took lessons together in dance, piano and singing.  Jane was the quietest of the three.  She had jet-black hair and classic features, and as a teenager won a coveted spot on the Bayonne High School cheerleading squad.  She met her husband, Jack Folger, while in high school.  Jack soon joined the Marines and fought in the Pacific in World War II.  When he returned home, they married.

                The Folgers began their family in 1949 with the birth of John Vincent Folger, Jr.  Five children followed.  Feeding a family of six was difficult.  Jane remained at home with the children while her husband worked at various jobs while also owning and running a popular Bayonne bar and grill.  Jack drank heavily.  The drinking worsened as the years passed.  For the sake of her children, Jane decided to remain in this deteriorating situation and tried to make the best of it.  Like many of the mothers of her generation, she also developed into a near-genius budgeter of limited funds, a talent that she would later exercise when she went off to work as a bank teller and bank officer.

                Jane’s oldest son, Jackie, was drafted into the Army in 1969.  He died in the Vietnam conflict in May of 1970.  This loss devastated Jane, but for the sake of her children, she swallowed her grief and tried to stay strong.  It was at this time that Jane began to develop an inner toughness.  Heretofore known as a sweet and unassuming woman who suffered her struggles in silence, Jane began to stand her ground, express her opinions, and make more and more decisions for herself and her children.

                When Jane’s youngest child, Terence, became of school age, Jane realized the need for another salary in the house and took a job at The Trust Company of New Jersey as a teller.  A promotion to bank officer followed, which was the position she held when she left the bank to care for her terminally ill son, Terence.

                Her youngest and most rebellious child, Terence, was at a very impressionable age when Jane’s marriage began to crumble.  Her husband’s lack of support and selfish devotion to satisfying his own needs became too much for Jane to take.  Together with her children, Jane finally left her husband and divorced him.  Terence seemed to be most affected by the divorce.

                Now living with Jane in a small apartment—her other four children were either in college or living on their own by now—Terence grew into a difficult, moody teenager.  He ran away from home several times and, in fact, attempted to commit suicide by jumping off a hotel roof in New York City, but failed.  His injuries were numerous however, and though they eventually healed, it is believed that during this hospital stay Terence contracted the dreaded HIV.

                Terence soon took up full-time residence in New York City and began to lead a bohemian lifestyle, choosing not to have anything to do with his family.  This did not sit well with Jane.  She fought long and hard to remain in contact with Terence, insisting that he make himself available for family functions, and maintaining a constant lifeline of communications with her reluctant son, whether he liked it or not.  He did not.

                HIV eventually took hold of Terence.  His health took a slow and torturous turn for the worst.  It was then that Jane was at her best.  Since Terence refused to return to New Jersey for care, Jane traveled by train into Manhattan on a daily basis and tended to Terence’s needs as best she could.  Their combative relationship finally relented somewhat, as Terence began to appreciate the power of his mother’s love.  Jane’s sense of family would not be denied.

                Terence’s death took a lot out of Jane.  She seemed to lose her devotion to her Catholic upbringing.  The sweetness that had always defined Jane was now replaced by an edginess which, for the next couple of years at least, kept her at arm’s length from all those who loved her.

                Her children, and eventually her grandchildren, brought her “back” from the edges of depression.  She began to instill in them that same sense of family, her “religion,” which she believed in so deeply.  When the grandchildren became old enough to travel, she especially liked to take them, in pairs, on field trips by bus into Manhattan.  They would visit Rockefeller Center, Greenwich Village, Central Park, the top of the World Trade Center and numerous other points of interest.  The time that Jane (“Grams”) spent with her grandchildren was obviously very special and important to her.

                In the last few years of her life, Jane also developed a very special kinship with her sister-in-law, Pat Cushing.  Pat’s husband and Jane’s brother, Thomas, died of diabetes, as his father and brother had before him.  With all of Jane’s and Pat’s children grown and both women retired, they soon realized not only that they had similar likes and dislikes, but that their personalities meshed quite well.  Whether it was classical concerts, local theater, walking tours, or just plain window-shopping, together the sisters-in-law took to the road and really enjoyed each other’s company.

                When Jane’s children suggested a vacation trip to San Francisco for Jane and a friend (San Francisco was a lifelong destination dream of Jane’s), it was an easy decision.  Jane invited Pat, who eagerly agreed.  Together they began to plan their great adventure.  An itinerary was quickly drawn up and amended 20 or 30 times.  Jane even wondered when earthquake season was.  When she was assured there was no such thing, the trip was on.

                The date of liftoff?  September 11, 2001.  Flight 93.

                Jane and Pat’s families will always wonder what roles they filled in the events that shaped their final moments.  Their respective ages probably limited those roles.  Both women had raised large families on limited budgets, survived tragedies large and small, fought through difficult times, survived, persevered and endured.

                When the family was invited to the White House soon after 9/11, a Marine was playing the piano in a reception area.  One of Jane’s grandchildren asked the Marine if he knew Grams’ favorite song, “Claire de Lune.”  He played it…it never sounded so good.


                Colleen Fraser was great fun.  She always wore wonderful earrings and had her hair spiked up.  She was a fiery personality and a strong woman.  Colleen and her sister Christine had both been born with rickets and were raised by their father and his mother.  They grew up in the projects, but, as Christine explained, “they had a wonderful childhood and a very attentive father who encouraged them to do everything for themselves.”

                Colleen Fraser was well known in the disability world of New Jersey.  She believed that it didn’t matter about your disability.  If you could live at home and wanted to, you should be able to get help to do so.  She didn’t believe in institutions.  The two sisters lived together in an apartment where Colleen, a self-taught gourmet chef, would cook wonderful meals.  The sisters were well known for their parties.

                Colleen was an inspiration to other disabled people to get out and do things for themselves.  She was a successful lobbyist.  She taught people how to speak up, to think for themselves, to be independent.  “You don’t have to be under someone’s thumb, you are in control of yourself,” she’d tell others.

                Colleen stood by her beliefs all through her life and was not afraid of anyone.  “There were people who hated her protesting and let down her tires,” said her sister.  “They threatened her but she was always strong.  She’d simply say, ‘So what?  I have a spare tire.’”

                Christine said after her sister’s death on Flight 93:  “If heaven wasn’t accessible before, it is now.”


                Although Andrew Garcia grew up in San Jose, his family roots were in Spain.  At university he competed on the track and as a wrestler.  He exercised every day of his life.

                At 29, Andy met Dorothy.  She was working for United and he was an air traffic controller.  They began dating and later got married.  Dorothy and Andy have three children:  Kelly, Audrey and Andrew.  They were the kind of couple who could spend all their time together and never get tired of each other’s company.  Later they started their own business together that they ran from their home in Portola Valley.

                Dorothy described Andy’s personality as calm.  She said he was very soft-spoken, she can’t remember seeing him angry more than twice in the 32 years they were together.  He liked music, exercise, walking, fishing and good food.

                Andy thought good behavior and good manners were very important.  But he also had a cheeky sense of humor and was always trying to catch Dorothy out by ringing her up on the work line, putting on a funny voice and pretending to be someone else.  She said she fell for it, even though he’d been doing it for years.

                Andy was fascinated with flying.  At the age of seven or eight, he built a giant model of a plane.  He knew the inside of an aircraft thoroughly and often went down to the airfield with his daughter, Kelly.  He had once wanted to be a pilot.

                Dorothy said, “There aren’t many real American heroes; kids look up to sports stars now.  But the people on that plane were good citizens, moral people, they had values that they brought to the table that day.”


                Jeremy Glick was the third of six children, and he grew up in New Jersey.  He attended Saddle River Day School and later went on to the University of Rochester in upstate New York.

                Jeremy’s parents, Joan and Lloyd, took all their boys to judo classes through their childhood.  Judo helped to make Jeremy physically and mentally tough.  But he didn’t flaunt his achievements.  When he came in third in the junior nationals, he didn’t even mention it at school.  His judo went from strength to strength, and he developed a huge frame.  As an adult he had to have his suits specially tailored because of the width of his shoulders.

                At age 13, Jeremy met Lyz Makely and they quickly became best friends, then later started dating.  They married in 1996 when they were both 25 years old.  They never tired of each other’s company and spent as much time as possible together.

                Jeremy loved to write poems and stories and he loved to read…a favorite was Ralph Waldo Emerson and when Lyz gave birth, that is what they named their daughter:  Emerson (or Emmy for short).  Emmy was born prematurely, three months before 9/11 and Jeremy doted on her.  He fed her during the night, soothed her to sleep stretched across his chest and never stopped talking about her.

                Jeremy’s parents instilled in their children the values of what they like to call the three “C’s”:  compassion, courage and character.  Jeremy strove to achieve those “C’s” in every aspect of his life, whether it was as simple as a race to see who could eat their breakfast cereal the quickest or a quest to become a national judo champion.  He faced difficulties head-on but always considered how his actions affected others and the best strategy to achieve his goal.


                Kristin White Gould was born Olga Kristin Osterholm in 1936.  She was a descendant of William Brewster, a passenger on the Mayflower in 1620.

                Kristin wrote her first poem at the tender age of five:

Sing you song to me, down by the sea

Where the sand is singing

And all the birds are free.

Can’t you hear the ocean roaring?

When it rains it’s always pouring.

We shall dance till morning

Down by the sea.


                She continued to be deeply involved in literature all her life.  By the age of 10, she had written six plays and 50 poems.  In an article from the time, the journalist spoke about how her face lit up and her eyes sparkled when talking about her work.  It was still true, 55 years later.

                Kristin studied Latin and ancient Greek at Cornell, graduating in 1957 and marrying her first husband the next year.  She had one daughter, Allison, and divorced in 1962.  As a single mom, she embarked on a career as a freelance writer.

                Kristin filled her apartment with books.  She was fluent in several languages and enjoyed all aspects of the arts and spent her vacations visiting historical sites.

                She became a medical journalist and was well known in New York City as an astute writer.  She also continued to write poetry.


                Lauren Catuzzi Grandcolas was born in Bloomington, Indiana, on August 31, 1963.  She was the daughter of Lawrence and Barbara Catuzzi of Houston, TX, and Lake Toxaway, NC; the cherished and adored wife of Jack Grandcolas of San Rafael, CA; the loving sister of Dara Ann Near of Short Hills, NJ, and Vaughn Catuzzi Lohec of Chatham, NJ.

                Lauren was a graduate of Stratford High School in Houston, TX, and the University of Texas in Austin, where she was a member of the Alpha Delta Pi Sorority.

Lauren and Jack were members of the Marin Country Club in Novato, CA.

                While residing in San Francisco, she worked for the law firm of Thelin, Marlin, Johnson and Bridges as a marketing executive, followed by positions at Price Waterhouse and Good Housekeeping magazine.  Most recently, Lauren was collaborating with a publisher on a book related to women’s life-style achievements, aimed at boosting the self-confidence of women specifically and adult behavior in general.  This non-fiction work was a long-term goal and source of great pride to her.  (Lauren’s family completed the book she was working on:  You Can Do It! The Merit Badge Handbook for Grown-Up Girls by Lauren Catuzzi Grandcolas.)

                Lauren so appreciated the outdoors that, in her spare time, she participated in hiking, jogging, rollerblading and kayaking, amongst many other activities.  Lauren was a strong and caring friend to everyone she knew, and she will be dearly missed by all.

                Lauren left us the way she lived her life:  strong, determined, courageous and our heroine.


                Flight attendant Wanda Anita Green was born in Oceanside, California, on August 22, 1952, to Francis and Aserene Smith.  The family moved to Oakland, California, within the year of her birth and she was raised in West and North Oakland.  Wanda attended Durant Elementary School, Hoover Junior High School and graduated from Oakland Technical High School in 1970.  She continued her education at Warner Pacific College in Portland, Oregon; Merritt College in Oakland, California; and Alameda College in Alameda, California.  She later earned her degree from Rockland Community College in New York.

                On August 2, 1973, she earned her wings at the In-flight Training Center of United Airlines in Chicago, IL.  Her domicile assignments included Chicago, IL, New York, NY, and Newark, NJ. 

                Wanda was united in matrimony to Joe Benjamin Green on May 27, 1978, and that union was blessed with a daughter, Jennifer Renada Green, and a son, Joe Benjamin Green II.  Wanda became very active in her children’s lives and became involved in many community organizations as a volunteer.  One of her most memorable volunteer jobs was the president of the PTA in New York.  Wanda was an active member of the Linden Presbyterian Church, where she served as deaconess.

                She continued her pursuit for knowledge and self-improvement by earning a real estate license in 1996.  She worked as an active real estate agent and office manager for NorthStar Realty.

                Wanda fulfilled her passion for flying and her ability to see the world and distinguished herself to others through her loving personality.  She had a stellar reputation in the community as a friend.  For those of you who knew Wanda, remember the blessed friendship and love that you shared.  Her loving memory will be an inspiration to her family and friends forever.

                Wanda was loved and will be deeply missed by her family:  daughter Jennifer R.  Green of Linden, NJ; son Joe B. Green II of Linden, NJ; father and mother Francis and Aserene Smith of Oakland, CA; grandmother Carrie Smith of Alameda, CA; sister and brother-in-law Sandra and Aristeed Jamerson of Antioch, CA; brother and sister-in-law Tommy and Tammy Smith of Fairfield, CA; nephew Frank Jamerson of Antioch, CA; former husband Joe B. Green of Stamford, CT; father-in-law Joe B. Green, Sr. of Queens, NY; sister-in-law Adriena Rainey of Hillside, NY; stepdaughter Crystal Green of Bronx, NY; stepson Damian Green of Denver, CO; the Green and Rainey families of New York and New Jersey; and a host of aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, nephews and friends in New Jersey, New York and California.

                On September 11, 2001, Wanda Anita Green, members of the crew and passengers aboard United Airlines Flight 93 gave their lives to save thousands of others.


                Donald Freeman Greene was executive vice president and CFO of Safe Flight Instrument Corp., a White Plains, New York, firm that invents and manufactures safety and other instrumentation for aircraft.  Safe Flight also created and sponsors the Corporate Angel Network, a program that flies cancer victims throughout the country for treatment.

                Donald Greene was born in White Plains, New York.  In high school, Don and his brothers were accomplished wrestlers.  He also played tennis, golf and rugby.  He graduated in engineering from Brown University and earned an M.B.A. from Pace University.  Eager and inquisitive, Greene took little bites of many things.  He learned to love the opera, to sail, to ski black diamond trails, to fly at age 14, to be a scuba enthusiast.  The same discipline that tempered his desire could be seen in his meticulous pre-flight examination of the planes he piloted.

                He met his wife, Claudette, in 1987.  They married in 1990 and settled in Greenwich, Connecticut, and had two wonderful children, Charlie and Jody.  The Greene family enjoyed an active life, spending holidays skiing and traveling.  He dined with his wife and children every night at their Greenwich home, whipped up breakfast for them most weekends and coached children’s soccer teams.  He also took the children flying as often as possible.

                Don was well liked by everyone.  His people skills served him well, both at work and social gatherings.  A friend said of him, “He was the kind of person one wanted to sit next to at a dinner party.”  And that was in fact how Don and Claudette first met—seated together at a fundraising dinner for the Westchester Arts Council.  That night, all the facets of his personality converged—his down-to-earth nature, positive outlook, charm and keen sense of humor.

                He was a devoted father and was extremely proud of his children.  Don’s brother Randy recalls that Don encouraged him and his brothers to be involved with Charlie and Jody because he had had such great input from his own uncles.

                When Don died, his son Charlie was ten years old.  He said of his father, “It was better to have a wonderful dad for a short time than a bad dad for even a minute.”  Claudette admitted that it is easy to elevate a lost loved one, creating a superhero from cherished memories.  Yet, it is difficult for family and friends to think of anything negative about Don.  Claudette and her sister remember, now with fondness, how he always insisted on re-organizing the dishwasher every time either one of them packed it!


                Linda Gronlund went to college in Long Island to study law.  She continued her studies at the American University in Washington.  But Linda was always interested in cars, a passion enthused by her father.  She soon joined Volvo’s North American office in northern New Jersey.

                In 1980, she became a member of the Sports Car Club of America; it was here that she met her partner, Joe DeLuca.  Although they’d known each other for 15 years, they only started dating five months before 9/11.  Her sister Elsa said that with Joe, Linda was happier than ever.

                In 1990, she started work at BMW North America.  Outside the office, Linda had many interests:  she enjoyed sailing, scuba diving, gardening and photography and held a brown belt in karate.  She was also trained as an emergency medical technician.  She was a powerful woman used to working in a man’s world.  Fiery tempered when provoked, her sister Elsa said she could hold her own in any discussion and always stood up for what she believed in.

                Linda oversaw the construction of her three-bedroom house in Green Lake, New York, to make sure it was as environmentally friendly as possible.  Her interest in the environment extended to her work.  Linda was involved in the development of hydrogen-fuelled cars for BMW.  She was very excited about the progress being made.  Elsa described her as “a practical environmentalist—not a tree hugger.  She believed in private car ownership, but thought the environment shouldn’t suffer because of it.”  She could be a workaholic and a perfectionist but she was always wonderful company.

                On September 11th, Linda was traveling to California with boyfriend Joe for a short break in the wine region.  They planned to celebrate her birthday there, which was the 13th of September.


                As a young boy, Richard Guadagno always portrayed a strong desire to do what was right and honorable.  He was totally trustworthy and compassionate and sensitive to the rights and feelings of others.  He had a strong sense of what was right and wrong and did not hesitate to challenge a wrong position.

                At the time of his death, Richard was employed by the federal government as a wildlife refuge manager (project leader) at the Humboldt Bay National Wildlife Refuge in Northern California.  Rich’s career with the federal government spanned over 17 years.  In addition to his managerial responsibilities at a major refuge, Rich was a certified federal law enforcement officer.  His training in law enforcement included exercises on dealing with potential hijackers.  What motivated Rich professionally was his profound love of nature and his dedication to preserving and protecting the nation’s natural resources, wildlife and environment.  His commitment to his goals was total.  Once while hiking with his sister, Lori, Rich observed a hiker who was allowing his dog to terrorize the wildlife.  Without hesitation, he pulled out his credentials and served the offender a citation.  Although his sister was embarrassed, others present applauded his action.

                Days before Rich returned to New Jersey to attend his grandmother’s 100th birthday celebration (occurring on September 10, 2001), the construction of a new facility at the Refuge was completed under his supervision.  In recognition of his 17 years of distinguished federal service, Congress passed legislation designating the new facility “The Richard J. Guadagno Headquarter and Visitors Center.”  A memorial scholarship fund administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Foundation has been established to award selected college students an opportunity to contribute to special projects and studies at the refuge.  This educational scholarship is a reflection of the example Richard set as a generous and supportive teacher and motivator to young biologists and environmentalists.

                Rich was a person of many and varied interests.  He was intensely focused and strived for perfection.  Among his many interests were music, astronomy, woodwork, stained glass making, photography and taxidermy.  He enjoyed surfing, rock climbing, biking, running and cooking.  He was an accomplished botanist and gardener and studied the stars and sky with his telescope.  He never wanted to stop growing and learning.  Although he possessed a rigid work ethic, he had a great sense of humor with an infectious laugh and smile.  Rich was a lover of animals, and his constant companion was his beloved black German Shepherd, Raven.

                Rich was a committed son, brother and friend who never lost his sense of wonder or discovery.  Richard’s parents, Bea and Jerry, with sister Lori, will continue to celebrate his accomplishments and his life.  He was a man of high ideals and vision—a doer who believed in “getting things done.”  He left his mark on the world by making it a better place for all.


                First Officer LeRoy Homer always knew he wanted to be a pilot.  He was 15 years old when he started flight instruction in the Cessna 152.  Working part-time jobs after school to pay for flying lessons, he completed his first solo at 16 years old and obtained his private pilot’s certificate in 1983.

                In the fall of 1983, LeRoy entered the Air Force Academy and graduated with the Class of 1987, 31st Squadron.  After completing pilot training in 1988, he was assigned to McGuire AFB in New Jersey, flying the C-141B Starlifter.  LeRoy achieved the rank of captain before his honorable discharge from active duty in 1995.  LeRoy continued his military career as a reservist, initially as an instructor pilot with the 356th Airlift Squadron at Wright Patterson AFB, Ohio, then subsequently as an Academy Liaison Officer, recruiting potential candidates for both the Air Force Academy and the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps.  During his time with the Reserves, he achieved the rank of major.

                LeRoy continued his flying career by joining United Airlines in May 1995.  His first assignment was second officer on the B727.  He then upgraded to first officer on the B757/767 in 1996, where he remained until September 11, 2001.  Martin Luther King, Jr. said,” The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”  It is unmistakable where LeRoy was standing on September 11, 2001.


                Toshiya Kuge was in his second year studying engineering at Waseda University in Tokyo, Japan.  He was a great sportsman—he played American football, soccer and was a keen runner.  He loved to watch sports, too, and supported the Osaka Tigers.

                He had a great interest in the English language and in America.  In February 2000, he stayed at Utah University for a month to practice his English.  His mother said he loved American music and films.  One of the ways he’d improved his English was to watch Hollywood films and repeat back the dialogue.  Mrs. Kuge remembered him reciting off whole scenes.

                At home, Toshiya had two husky dogs, a mother and baby who he loved.  After he’d spent the evening studying, he’d take them out running to relax.  Mrs. Kuge said how honest and friendly Toshiya was and how very close he was to his older brother.

                In August 2001, Toshiya returned to America and traveled around Canada.  He liked North America so much that he wanted to see about university courses there.  On September 11, 2001, he was flying to San Francisco to get his flight home to Japan.


                Flight attendant CeeCee Lyles was raised in Fort Pierce, Florida, by her mother, Carrie Ross.

                CeeCee spent six years with the Fort Pierce police department, during which time she was promoted to the position of detective.  Her mother recollected her calling home and saying, “Mom, I aced it!” when she past her sergeant’s test—she was in the top three in the class.

                While living in Fort Pierce, she also volunteered at Restoration House, a Christian women’s shelter.  CeeCee was a very outgoing, family-oriented woman who was very loving; she really cared about other people.  She was one of those people who thought she could do anything.  She was smart and competitive—a strong woman.

                In May 2000, she married Lorne Lyles, a sergeant with the Fort Myers police and their two families moved in together—CeeCee and Lorne each had two sons.  Then in October 2000, she became a flight attendant for United Airlines.  CeeCee loved to fly and her fellow flight attendants remembered her for her great sense of humor and her smile.  But she was also smart, intelligent and athletic.  She always wanted to do better and strove to improve things in her life.  In the period leading up to 9/11, she was happier than she had ever been before.

                CeeCee and Lorne were keen moviegoers; their favorites were comedies and action thrillers.  They set aside a night every week to be together on a date and were very much in love.  They spoke constantly on the phone when they were apart.  Lorne would call from his nightshift with the police to wake her up for work and tell her he loved her.


                Hilda Marcin was born Hildegarde Zill in Schwedelbach, Germany.  She was eight years old when her parents left via Cologne for the United States, settling in New Jersey.  Quickly Hildegarde became known as Hilda.

                Hilda was a hard worker all her life.  Until June 2001, she was a teaching aide at a Mount Olive, NJ school.  In 14 years, she had never taken a sick day.  She worked with children with physical and learning disabilities and really enjoyed her work.  At 79 years old, Hilda was finally retiring.  She found the East Coast winters increasingly difficult and was moving to the West Coast to live with her youngest daughter, Carole.  That morning her elder daughter, Betty, drove her to the airport.

                Hilda’s daughter, Carole, said her mother was a strong woman and was very independent and organized.  She had planned the move to California for the past year.  She was a lovely, friendly lady who was admired by friends, family and co-workers.  Carole said that although she only came to stay in California each summer, she knew more people in the local area than Carole did.  She’d start conversations with everyone.

                For Hilda, the worst day of her life was the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941.  Immediately, Hilda stepped into a job handling the payroll at the federal government’s massive shipyard and dry dock in Kearney, NJ.  During World War II, while the shipyard operated seven-days-a-week, so did she.

                Hilda took off only one day during those years to marry Edward Marcin, an Irvington policeman, in February 1943.  There wasn’t even time for a honeymoon.  Her husband died in 1979.

                Carole and Betty had planned a surprise 80th birthday party for their mother in December 2001.


                Waleska Martinez was born in Puerto Rico.  She studied computer science and business at the University of Puerto Rico before moving to New York in 1987.  The following year she began work at the U.S. Census Bureau’s regional office as a clerk.  Her talents were quickly spotted and she worked her way up through the ranks.

                Waleska’s boss at the Census Bureau, Tony Farthing, described her as the perfect employee.  “She was a lot of fun and a great work colleague.  Whenever there was a problem, she wouldn’t just come to me to report it, she would offer up solutions.  She wanted things to work.”  Tony had suggested to Waleska that she move higher up in management, but Waleska loved what she did and was happy running the computers.  She had great patience and excelled at training new recruits.  Tony said that the man who does her job now at the bureau was someone that Waleska herself had trained.

                She played tennis and baseball.  She enjoyed music and was a regular at pop concerts, especially Madonna.  She loved dancing, especially salsa.

                Her partner Angela said what a calming influence she could be and also how much fun—it seemed she was always smiling.  She is greatly missed by all her family and friends.


                Nicole Carol Miller was born March 4, 1980, in San Jose, California.  She lived all her life in San Jose, attending Allen Elementary School, Bret Harte Middle School and Pioneer High School, where she graduated in 1998.  At Pioneer High School, Nicole was a good student.  She was on the championship varsity swimming/diving team in her freshman and sophomore years.  She played softball all four years of high school, winning a softball college scholarship in her senior year.  After high school, Nicole continued to be an athlete who loved to work out, hike, play softball, ride horses and jog.

                On the Dean’s List at West Valley College in Saratoga, California, while working her way through college, Nicole was finishing up her last eight units.  She planned to transfer to California State University, Chico or California State University, San Jose in January 2002, where she was expecting to complete her Bachelor of Arts degree.

                Nicole had a wonderful outlook on life.  Her brilliant smile lit up entire rooms and her loving personality made everyone, including strangers, feel right at home.  It would be natural for her to give her life for another’s and that she did, bravely and heroically, along with the crew and passengers of United Airlines Flight 93 on September 11, 2001.

                Nicole is survived by her father, David J. Miller; stepmother, Catherine M. Miller; mother, Cathy M. Stefani; stepfather, Wayne S. Stefani, Sr.; and her siblings, Tiffney M. Miller, David S. Miller, Danielle L. Miller, Wayne S. Stefani, Jr., Joshua R. D. Tenorio and Anthony D. Tenorio.


                Louis J. Nacke, II was born on September 9, 1959, in Richmond, Virginia.  Even from a very young age he dreamed of being someone extraordinary.  He even dressed up as Superman as a child and went through the sliding glass door, nearly severing his arm and requiring 104 stitches.  Lou was raised with two brothers and a sister.  His family moved around quite a bit, and that helped Lou become an outgoing man. 

                As a teenager, he loved his friends, his family and sports.  Lou (Joey to his family) had a twinkle in his eye and a mischievous smile.  At 17, while most seniors were heading off to college, Joey chose to go to work and college part-time.  He worked his way up the ladder while raising a young family and attending college at night.  By the time he was 40, he was general manager for K.B. Toys distribution center in New Jersey.  He was proud of his accomplishments and the people who worked for him.  It was said at work that he walked through the warehouse like a kid still amazed by toys, gadgets and the operation center that he ran. 

                Lou was the father of two sons, Louis Paul (now 18) and Joseph (now 22).  Lou was an avid reader and sports fan.  He loved to cook, collect wine and spend time with his wife and sons.  He was never happier than he was with his family.  He was proud to be an American and was loyal to those he loved.  When you were talking with Lou, he made you feel like you were the only person in the room.  He truly invested in everyone he met and made you feel like family.  Lou always had a wise-cracking joke or an old cliché to express how he was feeling.  Lou’s life is not defined by the events of September 11, 2001, but in the way that he lived and loved.


                Donald and Jean Peterson married in 1984.  Don had three sons, David, Hamilton and Royster; and Jean had three daughters, Jennifer, Grace and Catherine.

                Jean was born and raised in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.  Before starting college, she spent a year in Germany in a foreign exchange program, during which she hoped to decide whether she wanted to be a German teacher or a nurse.  Although she had a wonderful time in Germany, she decided to pursue nursing.  She studied at the University of Rochester and once she had attained her nursing degree, she went on to complete a masters in education at Colombia.  Later in life, Jean volunteered as an ambulance driver, worked at a shelter for expectant mothers and “nursed” many friends and family through numerous difficulties.

                Don studied engineering at MIT and then went on to Harvard to get his MBA.  He ran the family business, Continental Electric, until the family sold it.  He later worked at the Howard Bank.  When he retired, Don volunteered much of his time to help those who were less fortunate or were experiencing a difficult time in life.  He was a clever, patient man.

                Don and Jean had both turned to religion after their divorces.  They met in the fall of 1983 through a friend at the church, and he proposed in the spring of 1984.  Jean’s eldest daughter, Jennifer, likes to joke that “Don showed up at the front door and never left.”

                They had a quiet family wedding.  Catherine was three and was a flower girl.  Grace and Jennifer were bridesmaids, and they all wore matching dresses.  Jean placed photos of them in their outfits all over the house.  On her 50th birthday, the daughters asked Jean what she wanted and she said, “To see you and to have a photograph of you all.”  They hired a professional photographer and had a photograph done on the beach, again in matching outfits, but this time (to the girls’ great relief) in jeans and white t-shirts.  Jean had an almost life-size print made up and hung it in their home.

                Much of their social life revolved around the church and they were involved in many charities and help groups.  They lived in Spring Lake, New Jersey.  Don loved weather—he could watch the Weather Channel for hours.  They lived by the ocean, and he would get up at 4 a.m. in a storm to watch the waves.  Jean was very health conscious, and the two of them went walking on the boardwalk regularly.  Their other pleasure was having guests over.  They particularly enjoyed hosting Thanksgiving, during which anyone who didn’t have family to visit was welcome.  Their daughters said when they showed up for Thanksgiving each year, they never knew who would be around the table.

                Every year, Don and Jean traveled to Yosemite and met up with Jean’s family.  They were on their way to the annual get-together on September 11, 2001.


                Mark “Mickey” Rothenberg grew up in Brooklyn and graduated from Franklin and Marshall College in 1970.  He married wife Meredith the following year, and then worked with his father in Brooklyn at Culver Glassware Company.  By 2001, he had started a new import company, MDR Global Resources.  Meredith described him as a complete workaholic, starting the day with calls to the East Coast and working right through to the evening, when he’d start calling Asia.  He was a man of great energy.

                Mickey was devoted to his family.  He and Meredith had two daughters, Rachel and Sara, whom he adored.  He talked to his mother every day on the phone.  His nephew, Andrew, remembered him for his humor and story telling and how he used to take him to ballgames.

                Mickey loved to travel and was fascinated by other cultures.  Being on an airplane was the only time that his phone wouldn’t ring and that he could relax.  He flew so often that he was often upgraded to first class and knew the flight attendants on his routes to Asia by name.  Another passion of Mickey’s was sports.  He was a scratch golfer, and he followed all the local sports teams on TV.

                Mickey was a friendly, sociable guy.  He met many interesting people on his travels and was not shy in coming forward and starting a conversation.  With a Mensa IQ and an amazing ability to negotiate, he was a successful businessman and great company.

                Christine Snyder lived in Hawaii and loved the outdoor life.

                Christine was engaged to Ian and the summer before 9/11, they had a promise ceremony.  Christine had known Ian since high school and first dated when she was 14 and he was 17.

                After graduating from college, Christine worked as an arborist with the Outdoor Circle.  She loved her work and was very ambitious.  She had a vibrant personality and really cared about the environment on the Island.  On September 11, 2001, she was returning home after attending a forestry conference in Washington.  During the trip, she’d seen New York and Washington with her friend and colleague, Mary Steiner.  On September 10, they had visited the World Trade Center.  Christine loved to see new things and had enjoyed traveling immensely; she bought postcards everywhere to write and tell her family all about it.

                Christine was somebody who could get on with anyone.  She had a really warm personality.  And the outside of her glowed, too—she had long blonde hair and a deep beach tan.

                Ian talked about how caring and fun she was.  And all her family spoke about how much Christine made people feel welcome and involved.  Everybody loved her, Christine’s father Neil commented.  Her mom Jan mentioned her cheeriness and how little she ever complained—Christine always saw the good in things.  Her cousin, Paige, said that because of her optimism and warmth, her nickname was Snow White.


                John Talignani was born in Palma, Italy.  His parents were from New York and were at home visiting family.  His mother was too pregnant to travel back, so John was born there.  The family traveled home by ship, and John grew up in Brooklyn.  He had two brothers and a sister.  His father was a baker and John learned the trade beside him.

                At 18, he joined the Army, then went on to be a bartender and cab driver.  John was an outgoing guy who liked to listen to big band music and was a fan of Bobby Darin.  Another passion was shopping on the Internet—he couldn’t resist the temptation to buy things and had no fear of buying online.  His stepson Mitch said he collected everything and the purchases stacked up around his apartment; he had been through several computers since he retired in the 1990s.

                Talignani was also a big baseball fan.  He supported the Mets, and he and his stepsons (by his late wife Selma) would go to games together.  He treated the boys like his own and was a wonderful father to them, an amazingly patient man.  He took them on as teenagers and immediately slipped into the father role.

                John was very family-focused, he was always on time and he maintained his love for cooking.  Mitch and his wife Shari said how he’d arrive at Christmas two hours early with home-baked pizzas.  He and Selma briefly tried retiring to Florida, but returned to New York because they missed the family too much.

                John was traveling to California to attend a memorial service for his middle stepson.


                Honor Elizabeth Wainio (October 8, 1973 - September 11, 2001), a former resident of Catonsville in Baltimore County, Maryland, was among the 40 passengers who died on United Airlines Flight 93, one of the four planes hijacked on September 11, 2001.

                A district manager for Discovery Channel Stores, Elizabeth was bound to San Francisco from Newark, New Jersey, that morning on business when the Boeing 757 crashed in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, killing all onboard.

                In her final moments, the 27-year-old was able to call from the airplane phone to say goodbye to the family she knew she would be leaving behind.  Esther Heymann, Elizabeth’s stepmother, received the call that morning.  “She expressed concern for the well-being of those who would have to recover from this murderous act,” said Heymann.  “In her typical style of thoughtfulness, Elizabeth calmly expressed more concern for how her family would recover.  She did not express despair about herself.  She found the calm in the middle of the storm.”

                For those who knew her, Elizabeth’s display of grace and unfailing generosity of spirit in the face of her own death was somehow not surprising.  “Elizabeth knew what mattered: love well and be unselfish,” said Heymann.

                As an entire nation mourned in the aftermath of the tragedy, hundreds of Elizabeth’s family, friends, coworkers and community members came together at Christian Temple in her hometown of Catonsville for a memorial service the following October 8.  The ceremony, held on the day Elizabeth would have turned 28, was a celebration of the life and passions of a remarkable young woman beloved to so many.

                Colleagues recalled the rising star, whose drive and commitment quickly put her on the fast track to success upon joining Discovery in 1999 as general manager at the company’s Harborplace Store in Baltimore.  Within one year, Elizabeth was promoted to oversee retail operations in New York and New Jersey.  In that position, she became the No. 1 ranking business development manager in regional sales performance at Discovery.

                Co-workers describing Elizabeth mentioned a few core traits again and again—thoughtful, intelligent, savvy, mature, enthusiastic.  And that smile:  “It lit up her whole face and brought an easiness that always seemed to make things better.”  Elizabeth’s competitive edge was balanced by a warm sense of humor and respect for people that allowed her to support the achievements of not only those she supervised, but also her peers.  Whether sending flowers to co-workers or playing pumped-up music when leaving them voicemail, Elizabeth was recognized as a motivating force.

                Her desk at work and office at home in the Watchung, New Jersey, apartment where she resided the year before she died were filled with words of inspiration from favorite authors and philosophers, among them Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry Miller and William Penn.

                The famed quote by poet Robert Frost held special meaning:  “Two roads diverged in a wood, and I took the one less traveled by.  And that has made all the difference.”

                Elizabeth’s boundless energy was evident early on.  Throughout her childhood, she was an avid learner at school and in her artistic interests, which included ballet and tap dancing classes, as well as violin and viola lessons.  At high school she was in the all-county orchestra for three years on the viola and all-state her senior year.

                As a student at Catonsville High School, where she graduated in 1991, “Lizz,” the nickname she then had among friends, was an honor student, captain of the cheerleading squad, news editor of the school paper and a member of the Baltimore County all-star field hockey team.  During her teen years, she turned to acting as a creative outlet, starring in Catonsville High productions of L’il Abner and Mame.  She had started acting in elementary school, starring as the countess in The Sound of Music.

                Idealistic and outspoken in her convictions, Elizabeth aspired to become a journalist while achieving her undergraduate degree in mass communications at Towson University.  To earn her way through college, Elizabeth worked two part-time jobs while carrying a full course load.  One of these was with Gymboree at Towson Town Mall.  Her business talents soon led her in another direction.  Elizabeth became a full-time employee for Gymboree while keeping up with her full class schedule.  Just prior to her graduation from Towson University in 1995, Elizabeth was hired as the district manager for the Maryland and Virginia stores.

                Within four years, Elizabeth developed into a skilled professional ready for new challenges and in 1999, she joined Discovery.  In April 2000, she moved to New Jersey as part of her promotion to regional manager for the New York/New Jersey area.  She shared her apartment with her cat, Sabrina.

                Her ambitions did not keep her from regular weekend visits back home in Catonsville to spend time with her parents; her brother, Tom, 30; and her sister, Sarah, 14; as well as her friends and, of course, her beloved Baltimore Orioles baseball team.  She visited her mother and stepfather, Jay, in their home in Atlanta, Georgia.  She loved steamed crabs and enjoyed taking them to her grandmother and grandfather in Charleroi, Pennsylvania, whom she visited often.

                An undeniable romantic, Elizabeth never tired of watching old movies like The Sound of Music, It’s a Wonderful Life and Breakfast at Tiffany’s.

                In an e-mail survey filled out in the year 2000 and sent to her mother, Mary, Elizabeth wrote that her favorite quote was, “Lose your dreams and you will lose your mind.”  On August 29, 2001, Elizabeth was able to fulfill her dream and began a trip to Italy to be in the wedding of her high school friend.  She had visited this friend twice before in Australia.  After the wedding, she met another dear friend in Paris, France, and fulfilled a lifetime dream of seeing Paris.  She had often said, “After Paris, what else could there be?”  As Elizabeth stood on a Paris bridge overlooking the Seine River, she remarked, “We have to purposefully seek out this presence of living into our lives back home.  We have to seek out and fully experience these moments of beauty that are constantly occurring in our daily lives.”

                Elizabeth’s journey among us ended on September 11, 2001.  Her death left a hole in the hearts of those who loved her and an anguished gratitude for having shared her trip.  The road she traveled has made all the difference.


                Husband Patrick said this of Deborah Welsh, flight attendant:  Debbie loved life.  She loved people.  She loved serving people.  And, in the end, she loved serving people more than her own life.  There is no greater sacrifice.  Debbie’s incredible passion for life touched all of us, inspired us and motivated us to try to emulate her love of life. 

                On July 20, 1972, Debbie’s 20th birthday, she graduated from training school at Eastern Airlines and took off on a career of devoted dedication.  Debbie loved to fly.  In all the passions of her life, Debbie loved to fly.  She loved her job.  She loved the airline industry for which she served.  It enriched her life in so many ways, from bravely trekking the Inca trail to Machu Picchu in Peru, to boldly surviving a near-fatal bout of pneumonia in Bali.

                She loved to explore new lands, new cultures:  New Zealand, Tahiti, Greece, Germany, Rome.  She embraced them all, like a native, and their cultures were forever a part of her.  But, the greatest gift Debbie received from flying was the friendship of co-workers, of flight attendants, pilots, gate agents, supervisors, ground crew…many of which became her dearest and closest friends…the flight crews that so often risk their lives to secure our safe passage.  Her passion for life was most often seen in her great ability to be joyous in the most adverse conditions.  Deb was a master of mirth, with a colossal sense of humor and mischievous silliness.  She had the most tremendous and infectious laugh that will always echo in our ears.  Over 10 years ago, after we first brought home our sweet dalmatian Dylan, Debbie found this silly coat in a village thrift shop.  It was a bulky white cotton raglan coat with big black spots all over it.  I’m certain that coat was in that thrift shop for a very long time as most walked past it, rolling their eyes; most wouldn’t even attempt to try it on.  Debbie didn’t have to try it on—she just bought it.  And when she came home and so proudly modeled her newfound treasure, once more (as so often), I fell in love with her again.  I looked up at her beaming smile, her eyes just so full of joy and carefully said, “’s you!”  That coat became a signature of Debbie’s joyous and silly personality.  She loved to walk Dylan in that coat, up and down the streets of the Village and Hell’s Kitchen.  She always referred to it as “Taking Dilly for silly walks” and, a couple of times, she proudly portrayed the animated version of Cruella De Vil in the New York Halloween Parade.  That silly coat in many ways became such a signature of her joyous flair, our funny valentine.

                There are just so many things I could tell you about Debbie, like her incredible talent.  She had such a beautiful voice.  She loved to sing and loved being a member of our wonderful choir at Saint Paul’s in New York.  One of my most treasured gifts is a cassette tape she made for me, singing “Crazy,” by Patsy Cline.  She taught herself to play the piano and guitar and played by ear.  She would sit at her piano and play “Rhapsody in Blue” beautifully, just from listening to it over and over.  She was truly amazing.  She loved to feed the homeless and wouldn’t hesitate to take a plate of food to one in hunger.  She was a wonderful cook, with a passion for exotic recipes.  And although she could tear through a kitchen like a Sherman Tank, the great mess was always worth the great meal. 

                Debbie was also a wonderful lover with such a tender and passionate inclination for romance and truly unselfish love.  There are so many endearing qualities:  her unfailing love of animals and underdogs; her courageous sense of justice and her Irish ire that often expressed it; but most of all, her saintly and selfless ability to always reach out to those in need.  The anecdotes of our relationship, her family and her friendships are countless.  A book of days could not contain them.  The wonderful qualities that defined Debbie’s extraordinary spirit are a part of all of her friends and family forever.  These are the qualities that will make a loving home in our hearts and memories.  I feel truly blessed, grateful and honored to have experienced the shining love of such a beautiful woman.  I hope and pray Debbie’s soul shall fly in our hearts forever.  I’ll love you always, sweetheart!  And until I see you again, sweet dreams.”









Paul Greengrass  (Written and Directed by / Produced by) has worked extensively across British film, television and theater.  

Greengrass wrote and directed the critically lauded, documentary-style feature Bloody Sunday, about the 1972 civil rights march in Northern Ireland that resulted in 13 deaths.  Bloody Sunday’s awards include the Golden Bear at the Berlin Film Festival 2002, the World Cinema Audience Award at the Sundance Film Festival 2002 and Best Director, the British Independent Film Awards 2002.

He most recently directed the international blockbuster The Bourne Supremacy, which grossed more than $50 million during its domestic opening weekend and went on to earn more than $175 million at the U.S. box office.  Greengrass’ other credits include Omagh (Best Single Drama, BAFTA 2005), The Murder of Stephen Lawrence (Best Single Film, BAFTA 2000; Special Jury Prize, BANFF TV Festival 2000), The Fix, The Theory of Flight (Best Foreign Film, Brussels Film Festival 1999) and Resurrected (Interfilm and OCIC Jury Awards, Berlin Film Festival 1989).

Greengrass has also written and directed many documentaries, including the official Live Aid documentary, Food, Trucks and Rock and Roll.  He began his career on World in Action, where he won a BAFTA.  He was also co-writer with Peter Wright of the controversial bestseller Spycatcher.


                Lloyd Levin (Produced by) most recently produced Hellboy with Lawrence Gordon, continuing an ongoing working relationship that began in the mid-’80s.  Levin received his first credit as associate producer on Die Hard, which was based upon Nothing Lasts Forever, a book that Levin brought to Gordon’s attention; he subsequently oversaw the film’s development.  Levin then served as associate producer on both the Academy Award®-nominated Field of Dreams (1989), directed by Phil Alden Robinson and starring Kevin Costner, and K-9 (1989), starring James Belushi.  In 1990, Levin served as executive producer on both Die Hard 2: Die Harder and Predator 2.  In 1991, he produced The Rocketeer, directed by Joe Johnston and starring Billy Campbell and Jennifer Connelly.

                Levin joined Gordon at Largo Entertainment, where he served as president of production and oversaw the production of such hit movies as Point Break, directed by Kathryn Bigelow and starring Keanu Reeves and Patrick Swayze; Unlawful Entry, starring Kurt Russell and Ray Liotta; and Timecop, starring Jean-Claude Van Damme.  At Largo Entertainment, Levin also executive-produced Used People, starring Shirley MacLaine, Kathy Bates and Marcello Mastroianni.

                After departing Largo, Levin continued his partnership with Gordon as a producer.  In 1997, he executive-produced The Devil’s Own, starring Harrison Ford and Brad Pitt.  The same year, he also produced Event Horizon, which starred Laurence Fishburne and Sam Neill.  In 1998, he produced Paul Thomas Anderson’s breakthrough movie, Boogie Nights; nominated for three Academy Awards®, Boogie Nights starred Mark Wahlberg, Julianne Moore, William H. Macy, Heather Graham and Burt Reynolds.

                Levin produced Mystery Men in 1999, which starred Ben Stiller, William H. Macy and Geoffrey Rush, and followed it with Lara Croft: Tomb Raider, starring Angelina Jolie.  The movie, based on the video game, went on to a worldwide box-office gross of over $280 million and became the most successful action movie of all time starring a female lead.  He also produced K-PAX, directed by Iain Softley and starring Kevin Spacey and Jeff Bridges, and Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life.  Upcoming for Levin are the Jan de Bont thriller Meg and the sequel to Hellboy. 


                Working Title Films, co-chaired by Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner (Produced by) since 1992, has become Europe’s leading film production company, making movies that defy boundaries as well as demographics.

                Working Title, founded in 1983, has made more than 80 films that have grossed $3.5 billion worldwide.  Its films have won four Academy Awards® (for Tim Robbins’ Dead Man Walking, Joel and Ethan Coen’s Fargo and Shekhar Kapur’s Elizabeth), 21 BAFTA Awards and prestigious prizes at the Cannes and Berlin International Film Festivals.  Bevan and Fellner have been honored with two of the highest film awards given to British filmmakers: the Michael Balcon Award for Outstanding British Contribution to Cinema at the Orange British Academy Film Awards (2004) and the Alexander Walker Film Award at the Evening Standard British Film Awards.  They were both recently made CBEs (Commanders of the British Empire).

                In addition to those films mentioned above, Working Title’s other worldwide successes include Mike Newell’s Four Weddings and a Funeral; Richard Curtis’ Love Actually; Roger Michell’s Notting Hill; Mel Smith’s Bean; Sydney Pollack’s The Interpreter; Peter Howitt’s Johnny English; Joel and Ethan Coen’s O Brother, Where Art Thou?; Chris and Paul Weitz’s About a Boy; and both Bridget Jones movies (directed by Sharon Maguire and Beeban Kidron, respectively).  The company has enjoyed long and successful creative collaborations with writer/director Richard Curtis; actors Rowan Atkinson, Colin Firth and Hugh Grant; and the Coen brothers’ filmmaking team, among others.

                Currently enjoying international box office success are Joe Wright’s Pride & Prejudice, starring Keira Knightley, Matthew Macfadyen, Brenda Blethyn and Donald Sutherland; and Kirk Jones’ Nanny McPhee, written by and starring Emma Thompson and also starring Colin Firth, Angela Lansbury and Kelly Macdonald.

                Working Title has four films in post-production; Phillip Noyce’s Hotstuff, starring Tim Robbins and Derek Luke; Joe Carnahan’s Smokin’ Aces, starring Jeremy Piven, Andy Garcia, Ray Liotta and Alicia Keys; Ringan Ledwidge’s Middle of Nowhere, with Amelia Warner, Shaun Evans and Scott Mechlowicz; and Weiland’s Sixty Six, starring Eddie Marsan and Helena Bonham Carter.

                Currently in pre-production are Shekhar Kapur’s The Golden Age—the long-awaited follow up to the successful Elizabeth—starring Cate Blanchett, Geoffrey Rush and Clive Owen; Edgar Wright’s Hott Fuzz, starring Simon Pegg; Bean II (working title), starring Rowan Atkinson; and Joe Wright’s Atonement, adapted from the book by Ian McEwan.

                In 1999, a new division, WT², was formed with the purpose of providing an energetic and creatively fertile home for key emerging U.K. film talent and lower-budgeted productions.  Its first film, Stephen Daldry’s Billy Elliot, was released in 2000 and became an international critical and commercial hit.  The film grossed over $100 million worldwide, earned three Academy Award® and two Golden Globe Award nominations and was named Best Feature at the British Independent Film Awards.  The film’s director, Stephen Daldry, and screenwriter, Lee Hall, reunited for a stage musical version, with newly composed songs by Sir Elton John.  The hit production, marking Working Title’s debut theatrical venture (co-produced with Old Vic Prods.), has been playing to packed houses at London’s Victoria Theatre.

                WT²’s subsequent films have included Mark Mylod’s Ali G Indahouse, starring Sacha Baron Cohen, which was a smash in the U.K.; Marc Evans’ acclaimed thriller My Little Eye; Terry Loane’s Mickybo & Me; Damien O’Donnell’s Inside I’m Dancing, which won the Audience Award at the 2004 Edinburgh International Film Festival; and Edgar Wright’s award-winning sleeper hit “rom zom com” (romantic zombie comedy) Shaun of the Dead.


Debra Hayward (Executive Producer) joined Working Title in 1989 as producer’s assistant on such films as Fools of Fortune and Dakota Road and then moved into development, where she worked on such diverse films as 1991’s London Kills Me and 1993’s Map of the Human Heart.

                Hayward recently served as executive producer on Nanny McPhee, Pride & Prejudice and Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason and as co-producer on The Interpreter.  Additional recent co-producer credits include Ned Kelly, Love Actually, Johnny English and About a Boy.  She also recently executive-produced The Guru and 40 Days and 40 Nights.

                Hayward’s additional co-producing credits include Bridget Jones’s Diary, Captain Corelli’s Mandolin, Elizabeth, The Matchmaker and The Borrowers.  As development executive, Hayward was instrumental in bringing to the screen Notting Hill, Plunkett & Macleane, French Kiss, Moonlight and Valentino, Panther, Four Weddings and a Funeral and Posse. 


Liza Chasin (Executive Producer) has served as president of U.S. production at Working Title Films since 1996.  She recently produced Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason, starring Renée Zellweger in the role of the quintessential modern single woman; Wimbledon, directed by Richard Loncraine and starring Kirsten Dunst and Paul Bettany; Pride & Prejudice, starring Keira Knightley and directed by Joe Wright; and Nanny McPhee, starring Emma Thompson, Colin Firth and Angela Lansbury.  Chasin also served as executive producer on the highly acclaimed Thirteen, co-produced Richard Curtis’ worldwide hit Love Actually and executive-produced the family adventure Thunderbirds.

                Over the past several years, Chasin has been involved in the development and production of such acclaimed films as Dead Man Walking, Fargo, Notting Hill and O Brother, Where Art Thou?  Chasin also served as co-producer of About a Boy, Bridget Jones’s Diary and High Fidelity.  She also co-produced Elizabeth, starring Cate Blanchett.

                A graduate of NYU Film School, Chasin first joined Working Title in 1991 as director of development.  She was then promoted to vice president of production and development, becoming the head of the Los Angeles office, overseeing the company’s creative affairs in the U.S.  Prior to joining Working Title, Chasin worked for several years in various production capacities in New York-based production companies.


Barry Akroyd BSC (Director of Photography), member of the British Society of Cinematographers, has served as director of photography on more than 40 motion pictures and telefilms since he started as an assistant camera operator in the entertainment industry in the mid-’80s. 

Very soon after, he served as cinematographer on seminal English director Ken Loach’s documentary The Eleventh Hour: The View from the Woodpile, which began what would become a longstanding, fruitful collaboration between Loach and Akroyd.  To date, Loach has filmed 11 projects for the director, which include:  Raining Stones, Ladybird Ladybird, Land and Freedom, Carla’s Song, My Name Is Joe, Bread and Roses, The Navigators, Sweet Sixteen, Ae Fond Kiss and the upcoming The Wind That Shakes the Barley.

Akroyd’s other director of photography credits include Gideon’s Daughter, Love + Hate, Eroica, The Lost Prince (BAFTA nominated), Out of Control, Dust, Very Annie Mary, Beautiful People, The Lost Son, Amazing Grace, Anne Frank Remembered, Tracking Down Maggie: The Unofficial Biography of Margaret Thatcher and Aileen Wuornos: The Selling of a Serial Killer.  Akroyd also directed the BAFTA-nominated short film The Butterfly Man.   


Clare Douglas (Editor) has been editing feature and telefilms for more than three decades.  Her work has garnered three BAFTA nominations for Best Editing:  2003’s The Lost Prince, 2002’s Bloody Sunday and 1982’s Smiley’s People.  Douglas has previously worked with Paul Greengrass, editing both Bloody Sunday and The Murder of Stephen Lawrence. 

Douglas’ other film editing credits include Friends and Crocodiles, A Way of Life (starring Brenda Blethyn), The Misadventures of Margaret (starring Parker Posey and Jeremy Northam), Midnight Movie, For the Greater Good, Secret Friends and Christabel.  Her work for television includes such projects as Family Money; Cold Lazarus; Lipstick on Your Collar; Needle; Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy; Dial M for Murder; and Emma.


Christopher Rouse ACE’s (Editor) keen sense of story combined with his ability to cut unique action sequences has made him one of the most sought-after editors around.

Rouse most recently edited the hit Eight Below and the international blockbuster The Bourne Supremacy (with Richard Pearson).  He also worked on the first installment of the Bourne franchise, The Bourne Identity, and edited the John Woo-directed film Paycheck, starring Ben Affleck.  He also co-edited The Italian Job and lent his talents as the additional editor on Manito (winner of the Special Jury Prize at the 2002 Sundance Film Festival) and on the IMAX film Olympic Glory.

 In addition to his work on feature films, he received an Emmy nomination for editing the miniseries Anne Frank: The Whole Story, starring Ben Kingsley.  He also edited several episodes of the award-winning From the Earth to the Moon, a miniseries produced by Tom Hanks and Ron Howard.


Richard Pearson (Editor) most recently served as editor on the motion picture adaptation of the groundbreaking Broadway musical Rent; on the ensemble dark comedy A Little Trip to Heaven; and on the international hit The Bourne Supremacy (with Christopher Rouse).  Pearson also edited the jungle-set action-adventure The Rundown, starring The Rock and Seann William Scott, and the hit sequel Men in Black II (with editor Steven Weisberg).  His other motion picture credits include The Score, Drowning Mona, Bowfinger and Muppets From Space.

Pearson received an Emmy nomination for his work on the 1998 miniseries From the Earth to the Moon.   He also created the title design for the acclaimed series.


Dominic Watkins (Production Designer) began with a successful art design career creating sets for nightclubs, which served as an entrée into music videos.  His collaborations with such top recording artists as Christina Aguilera, LL Cool J, Madonna, Janet Jackson, David Bowie, Aerosmith, Red Hot Chili Peppers and Kylie Minogue helped to fashion some of their most distinctive music videos.  Segueing into television commercials, Watkins designed the spots for such leading companies as Coca-Cola, XM Radio, Visa, Mercedes Benz, MCI, Nike and Honda, to name a few. 

Watkins made his feature film production design debut with the thriller Wicked, starring Julia Stiles and Billy Moses.  He went on to serve as production designer on director Michael Bay’s Bad Boys II, starring Will Smith, on Paul Greengrass’ worldwide hit thriller The Bourne Supremacy and on Nick Cassavetes’ Alpha Dog.  


Dinah Collin (Costume Designer) has had a long and distinguished career in British television and feature film costuming, beginning with one of her earliest credits on the seminal television series Dr. Who; since then, she has created costumes for everything from period epics to modern-day dramas.  Collin also continues her long-term collaboration with filmmaker Paul Greengrass, having previously worked with him on the features The Bourne Supremacy, Bloody Sunday and The Theory of Flight and the telefeatures The Murder of Stephen Lawrence and The Fix.  Most recently, her costume designs were seen in Michael Caton-Jones’ Shooting Dogs.

Her work in television miniseries includes the acclaimed 1995 version of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice (starring Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle), which won her an Emmy (Outstanding Individual Achievement in Costume Design for a Miniseries or Special), as well as a BAFTA nomination; and The Sins (starring Pete Postlethwaite).  She also costumed the telefeature Portrait of a Marriage, for which she was awarded a BAFTA for Best Costume Design.

Collin’s additional film credits include the feature Gladiatress and one of the shorts in the collection Ten Minutes Older: The Cello.


In 1988, John Powell (Music by) landed a job composing music for commercials and television at London’s Air-Edel Music.  There, he worked alongside composers Hans Zimmer and Patrick Doyle, where he made his first foray into feature films by assisting Doyle with the score of Into the West and writing cues and working as an electronic music programmer for Zimmer on White Fang.

Adhering to one musical regime is not in Powell’s nature.  Before moving to Los Angeles, he played for more than 15 years with the Fabulisitics, an early ’60s London soul band that performed for everyone from Lady Diana to denizens of the local pub.

While in Los Angeles, it was Powell’s hair-raising score for the Nicolas Cage/John Travolta-starrer Face/Off that put him on the map.  He successfully built a heightened state, utilizing industrial sounds, unresolved harmonies and tragic melodies. He then turned to the Ben Affleck and Sandra Bullock-starrer Forces of Nature, writing romantic melodies with a quirky comedic sensibility.

For Antz, Powell created a musical mélange of jazz, Latin and classical sounds with a highly imaginative theme.  Next came Endurance, developed and co-produced by Terrence Malick; in an almost wordless film, Powell’s score serves as dialogue, conveying the central character’s joy, dignity and struggle.

John has scored a wide variety of films such as Chicken Run for DreamWorks; the action films Mr. & Mrs. Smith, The Bourne Supremacy, Paycheck, The Italian Job and The Bourne Identity; the comedies Be Cool, Mr. 3000, Alfie and Two Weeks Notice; the animated feature Robots; and the audience favorite Drumline.  For the animated film Shrek, Powell impressed audiences and critics alike in creating a sophisticated and intelligent score.  He again won the hearts of audiences with the poignant score for I Am Sam.

This year, Powell will venture into the worlds of action and animation again, with Ice Age 2: The Meltdown and the upcoming X-Men: The Last Stand for Brett Ratner and Happy Feet for George Miller.

From action to thrillers to comedies to dramas, he has proven himself to be one of the most talented and original new voices on the film music scene. 

—United 93—



 National Days of Prayer and Remembrance Proclamation

     As we remember the tragic events of September 11, 2001, and the thousands of innocent lives lost on that day, we recall as well the outpouring of compassion and faith that swept our Nation in the face of the evil done that day. In designating September 6-8 as National Days of Prayer and Remembrance, I ask all Americans to join together in cities, communities, neighborhoods, and places of worship to honor those who were lost, to pray for those who grieve, and to give thanks for God's enduring blessings on our land. And let us, through prayer, seek the wisdom, patience, and strength to bring those responsible for the attacks to justice and to press for a world at peace.


Remember and Pay Tribute:
Remembering September 11th five years later.
September 6-8 National Days of Prayer and Remembrance
September 11th Designated as Patriot Day

Basic Facts About September 11, 2001


Fight Terrorism Now!


A special  website dedicated to eliminating terrorism has been set up to help locate and stamp out terrorism. Individuals providing information may be eligible for a reward of up to $5 million, protection of identities and relocation with their families.

If you have any information and are overseas, contact the nearest US embassy or consulate; otherwise use the contact information below.

Airline Information: 

American Airlines

American Airlines Chief Executive Officer Don Carty:
"I know that I speak for every employee at American Airlines when I extend our deepest sympathy to those who lost a loved one, family member or friend on American Airlines Flight 11, American Airlines Flight 77, United Airlines Flight 93, United Airlines Flight 175 or at the sites of these tragic accidents. Our thoughts and prayers are with you at this time of immense sorrow."

 Customers who wish to receive information about relatives should call American’s response number at 1-800-245-0999

United Airlines

A Message from United Airlines CEO James E. Goodwin

     "The thoughts and prayers of all of us at United are with the families and friends of those who were the victims of these unprecedented acts of terrorism. We will be working very hard in the days and weeks ahead to help the families cope with the trauma of these terrible tragedies. Our employees will provide the families with the latest information, assist with any financial or travel arrangements that may be needed, and respond to other family requests and needs."

Emergency Numbers:

Missing Persons Identity

Locate missing persons from the American and United Airlines flights, World Trade Center and Pentagon Bombings. 
Contains all the legitimate donation links to help the survivors and victims of the Attack on America. It is an easy-to-use, one-stop online resource designed to help people find volunteer and giving opportunities in their own communities and beyond. All links have been set up to answer questions on the terrorist attacks.


The International Federation is a federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies from more than 176 countries, working together to improve the lives of the world's most vulnerable people.

R&R Banner

  Federal Emergency Management Agency -- 

FEMA -- is an independent agency of the federal government, reporting to the President. Since its founding in 1979, FEMA's mission has been clear:

"to reduce loss of life and property and protect our nation's critical infrastructure from all types of hazards through a comprehensive, risk-based, emergency management program of mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery."

Government Organizations

The Counter Terrorism Page

Terrorism, security and personal protection, international law enforcement, intelligence, and counter terrorism policy.    Articles on workplace, trends in terrorism, product tampering.  Travel advisories provide health conditions and requirements for monitoring various countries.




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