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9/11 Memories Remain Fresh

Weston residents gathered around the Sept. 11 Memorial bench outside Town Hall Saturday morning to remember the ninth anniversary of the terrorist attacks. Personal stories from that day in 2001 were shared and the six Weston residents killed were remembered.

Selectman Dan Gilbert placed six roses across the bench, and Selectman David Muller read the names: Scott T. Coleman, Keith E. Coleman, Robert T. Jordan, Robert A. Lawrence Jr., Bradley H. Vadas and Glenn D. Kirwin.

Weston resident Gil Sanborn, a civilian assistant to the secretary of the Army for Connecticut, was one of several who spoke at the ceremony. Sanborn, tearfully recalled his "complete sense of dread" as he looked out his office window, saw the plane hit the South Tower and realized the city was under attack. "My dread went to despair," he said, describing the screams he heard when he escaped to the street. His said his fear was calmed when an F-15 fighter flew overhead, reassuring the crowd of their safety.

First Selectman Gayle Weinstein recalled how Saturday's cool, sunny weather was not unlike the day of the attacks. She remembered her fear as she tried to reach her husband, brother and two cousins who worked in the city. All were safe, but her husband was not able to get home that day and walked uptown from his office to stay with friends.

Several other religious leaders, including Rev. David Feyrer of Emmanuel Episcopal Church, Father Michael Dunn of Francis of Assisi, and the Rev. Diane Carter of Norfield Congregational Church, offered words of faith, courage and religious tolerance.

Carter, who was a member of the Pleasantville Fire Dept. at the time of the attacks, worked the first overnight shift at Ground Zero. She helped repair fire trucks, build an NYPD facility and dining hall and sifting facility for the debris and worked as an electrician helping the workers to see at night. The common thread she said she noticed throughout her experiences, some of which she said she would like to forget, was "the hope found in the resiliency of the human spirit."

The crowd paused for a moment of silence around 8:46 a.m., the time the first plane crashed into the North Tower, and again at 9:03 a.m. to remember those who died when the second tower was hit and those killed at the Pentagon and in Pennsylvania. Weston resident Jennifer Barron led the group in patriotic song.

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