By Cristina Di Leva
NEW YORK – Today, in one of the the saddest days in American history, New York wakes up under a cloudy sky and gathers at Ground Zero to officially commemorate the15th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
As we all know on the morning of September 11, 2011 four airplanes crashed into the Twin Towers in New York City, the Pentagon in Washington, D.C., and a field outside Shanksville, Pennsylvania, killing nearly 3,000 people.
A total of 2,753 people died in the World Trade Center, among those 343 were firefighters, 23 police officers and 37 officers of the Port of Authority of New York and New Jersey.
This Sunday in downtown Manhattan, relatives wear ribbons with the photos of their loved ones, whisper the names of the victims on the exact same spot where the towers once stood.
Bells ring six times during the morning, introducing moments of silence in Ground Zero: at 8:46 a.m., when the American Airlines Flight 11 hit the north tower; at 9:03, when United Airlines Flight 175 crashed into the south tower; at 9:37, when American Airlines Flight 77 careened into the Pentagon; at 9:59, when the south tower collapsed; at 10:03, when Flight 93 crashed in Pennsylvania; at 10:28, when the north tower tumbled.
Thousands of people: family members, journalists from all over the world, tourists, and New Yorkers took part in the ceremony to remember the attacks. Among the public, Giammaria Ravetti and Marco Invernizzi, President and CEO of Spacecannon SNe, an Italian lighting factory based in Lecco and creators of the famous Tribute of Light, an art installation lit annually on the anniversary of the terrorist attack. Tribute in Light illuminates the New York City’s sky just south of the Memorial site; it reaches four miles into the sky and is visible within a 60-mile radius on a clear night.
Presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump also participated in the special service at Ground Zero.
In Washington, President Barack Obama addressed the families and friends of the 9/11 victims from the Pentagon Memorial.
Obama said, “the 3,000 beautiful lives gone that day will never be forgotten.”