PITTSBURGH – The Flight 93 National Memorial in southwestern Pennsylvania is holding four days of special programs leading up to the 11th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
On Saturday at 1 p.m., a panel will examine how children experienced 9/11 and expressed their feelings through letters and art. Mary Margaret Kerr, a professor of child psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh, is one of the scheduled panelists.
"We are struck by how hopeful the children are. There are messages of unity and hope for the future," Kerr said, though the children also tried to express their sadness and sympathy for people who lost loved ones that day.
Another Saturday panel will feature television, newspaper, and radio journalists who filed the first dispatches from the crash site near Shanksville, about 75 miles southeast of Pittsburgh. That begins at 3 p.m.
On Sunday at 1 p.m., members of FBI investigation teams who worked at the crash site will discuss their work. At 3 p.m., people who were in Washington, D.C. on 9/11 will describe their experiences.
Numerous other events are scheduled during the four days, including an array of 40 candle lanterns, a reading of the names of the 40 passengers and crew who died and musical performances.
United Flight 93 was traveling from Newark, N.J. when it was hijacked. It crashed after passengers and crew, some alerted by cellphone calls from loved ones about the New York attacks, decided to fight the hijackers. The 9/11 Commission said the terrorists likely wanted to crash the plane into the White House or the U.S. Capitol, but the jet went down in a field near Shanksville.
On Saturday, Sunday and Monday the park will be open from 9 a.m. to 9:30 p.m., and on Tuesday it will be open from 8 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. A full schedule of events is available at the park website.