Family members of Flight 93 victims return to crash site

September 11, 2011|By JENNIFER FITCH |
  • Lori Malloy of Blair County, Pa., turns back to look at items left in Memorial Plaza as she enters the Flight 93 National Memorial in Shanksville, Pa., with Pam Keagy, also of Blair County.
Photo by Jennifer Fitch

SHANKSVILLE, Pa. — “Christian Adams, Todd A. Beamer, Alan Anthony Beaven ...”

Sunday morning, at the newly dedicated Flight 93 National Memorial, family members and dignitaries read the names of the 40 passengers and crew members who thwarted a terrorist attack on Sept. 11, 2001, and died when the plane crashed.

Bells echoed through the hushed crowd of thousands after each name.

“My daughter, Deora Frances Bodley ... my beautiful sister, CeeCee Ross Lyles ...”

Most of those gathered didn’t know the people who perished when the plane hit a rural Pennsylvania field. But some were thinking specifically of their loved ones.

“I feel Jason here,” said Deborah Dahl of Austin, Texas.

Dahl’s brother-in-law, Capt. Jason M. Dahl, was the plane’s pilot. She returned to Somerset County this weekend for the first time since 2002.

“I like it because it’s so simple, and the crash site is a place of honor,” she said.

The Flight 93 families are grateful to the people they met over the weekend as they gathered for the event’s 10th anniversary, according to Patrick White of Naples, Fla.

White’s cousin, Louis “Joey” Nacke II, was one of the passengers who forced their way into the plane’s cockpit to grapple for control of the aircraft.

“My cousin Joey was a remarkable man, a loving father, a terrific son and brother,” White said. “Friday was his 52nd birthday. We miss him greatly, but we are so proud of what he and the others of Flight 93 did.”

White said Joey’s siblings, Kenny Nacke and Paula Jacobs, picked out his voice when listening to the cockpit voice recorder.

“They knew they heard their brother for the last time,” White said.

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