Friday, November 30, 2001

LONDON With roses, hymns and tears, hundreds of friends and relatives of the Britons killed in the September 11 terror attacks mourned yesterday at Westminster Abbey, where the nation has come for centuries to grieve and celebrate.
Former President George Bush came as envoy for his son. Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Philip, Prince Charles and Prime Minister Tony Blair also joined New York and London rescue workers and relatives who clutched white roses and wore red, white and blue ribbons.
“It is part of the tragedy of so many of those we honor here today that their lives ended far from home, far from family and friends, and all those gathered here today to mourn their passing,” said Archbishop of Canterbury George Carey.
More than 1,000 people including relatives of many of the 78 Britons killed filled the abbey, the site of dozens of royal weddings, coronations and funerals. Hundreds of people from more than 80 countries were killed in the terror attacks on the United States.
Before the service, the children of Simon Maddison a Briton who lived in Florham Park, N.J., and died in the World Trade Center gave the queen a bouquet of white roses and lilies of the valley on behalf of all those who lost parents in the attacks.
“The real importance of presenting the flowers is about them knowing that their father was so special that even the queen wants to have a memorial service for him and the others who died,” their mother, Maureen Maddison, said.
The queen stopped for a moment to speak with Caileigh, 7, and Kyle, 4, with 16-month-old sister Sydney nearby. Their father, 40, worked on the north tower’s 103rd floor as a contractor for Cantor Fitzgerald.
As the ceremony began, Lt. Amy Monroe, a New York City Fire Department paramedic who entered the burning World Trade Center on September 11, carried the American flag through the abbey. Detective Constable Ron Cuthbertson of London’s Metropolitan Police walked alongside her with Britain’s Union Jack.
Mourners sang “God Save the Queen” and “The Star-Spangled Banner,” then a few hymns with words that were painfully fitting.
“Set me as a seal upon thine heart,” went one. “For love is strong as death.”
Mr. Blair, who was joined by his wife, Cherie, read from the Bible, and actor Judi Dench offered a poem by Christina Georgina Rossetti.
“Remember me when I am gone away,” she read. “Gone far away into the silent land, when you can no more hold me by the hand.”
Mr. Bush did not speak. The congregation included U.S. Ambassador William Farish and dozens of white-gloved firefighters and police officers from New York and Britain.

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