Former President George W. Bush declined an invitation from President Obama to join him on Thursday at New York City’s Ground Zero to meet with the families of 9/11 victims.

Bush appreciated the invitation, but “has chosen in his post-presidency to remain largely out of the spotlight,” David Sherzer, a Bush spokesman, said.

Ground Zero, the site of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks by Al Qaeda that felled the World Trade Center's Twin Towers, has turned into a rallying site since New Yorkers learned Usama bin Laden was killed Sunday during a raid by U.S. Navy SEALs.

Sherzer said Bush continues to celebrate this important victory in the war on terror with all Americans.