- The Washington Times - Sunday, September 12, 2004

BOSTON — Sen. John Kerry mourned yesterday for those killed three years ago in the September 11 terrorist hijackings. Two of the ill-fated planes departed from here.

After a week of rigorous campaigning, the Democratic presidential nominee awoke in his Beacon Hill home yesterday and went to Boston’s Public Garden to place flowers at a memorial dedicated last year to the September 11 victims.

Overhead, a small plane towed an American flag. Mr. Kerry placed three white lilies — tied with a ribbon of red, white and blue — on the memorial at the moment American Airlines Flight 11 struck the North Tower of the World Trade Center, the first sign of the attack that day.

As with United Airlines Flight 175 that later hit the South Tower, Flight 11 originated at Boston’s Logan Airport. The two other planes involved in the hijackings that killed almost 3,000 people crashed into the Pentagon and a field in rural western Pennsylvania.

After a private breakfast with families of victims, the Massachusetts senator spoke at a memorial service at the city’s opera house.

“While September 11th was the worst day we have ever seen, it brought out the best in all of us,” Mr. Kerry told the families. “We will always remember where we were on that day. And we must always remember that we will only defeat those who sought to destroy us by standing together as one America.”

Before Mr. Kerry spoke, one of the family members endorsed him at the otherwise- reverential ceremony hosted by the nonprofit Massachusetts 9/11 Fund.

In talking about the loss of her mother, Sonia Puopolo said she prayed for a “President John Kerry” to “cure this troubled world.” The rest of the service included a children’s choir and video feeds from family members who couldn’t attend.

Patti Quigley and Susan Retik, who were bicycling yesterday from Manhattan to Boston to commemorate the loss of their husbands three years ago, spoke of the importance of combating terrorism by aiding countries such as Afghanistan.

“The only way to fight terrorism is through education,” Mrs. Quigley said.

Vice-presidential nominee John Edwards said at a prayer breakfast sponsored by the Congressional Black Caucus yesterday in the District that Americans should use the unity resulting from September 11 to fix “all of the challenges that exist right now” and build one America.

“For that child we see every day sitting on the front step, locked out and alone, let’s work together to give him a safe place to go with friends and teachers while his mom works,” the North Carolina senator said. “For that whole town that’s watched their factory lock its doors, let’s work together to make sure that we bring opportunity and an equal chance to their front door.”

After yesterday’s memorial ceremony, the Kerry campaign issued a statement urging President Bush to release a 2001 report by his Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board headed by retired Gen. Brent Scowcroft. The board reportedly determined that U.S. intelligence agencies should be restructured and answer to just one national intelligence chief.

“The White House has held this important report under wraps for nearly three years while resisting efforts to strengthen the intelligence services that are essential to preventing terrorist attacks and protecting our nation,” Mr. Kerry said. “What is the White House hiding? Why shouldn’t the Congress and the American people be able to fully consider Gen. Scowcroft’s recommendations.”

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