Those who grounded plane remembered in Shanksville this 9/11

SHANKSVILLE, Pa. (WYTV) – Sunday marks the day that people pause each year to remember the lives lost on September 11, 2001.

Memorials are being held this weekend around the Mahoning Valley. In Shanksville, Pennsylvania, where United Airlines Flight 93 crashed that day, a special observance is planned.

You can see the crash site from the memorial plaza and view the 40 names of those who died there, or go to the visitor’s center where several exhibits are on display.
Dozens of signs at the site detail what happened on September 11, 2001.

Flight 93 was going from Newark to San Francisco but was delayed 25 minutes. The first picture of smoke coming from the ground was taken by someone who lived a mile and a half away.

Mary Lou McBride, of Pennsylvania, was looking at pictures of passengers and crew at the memorial on Friday.

“I spoke with a woman from California last time I was hear, looking for her son’s name. I can’t even imagine,” she said.

Seven crew members, 33 passengers and an unborn child were on the flight and did everything they could to defeat the hijackers.

Flights 93 had just passed over Youngstown on its normal flight path when the hijackers got control and turned the plane, pointing it at Washington DC. They didn’t make it, crashing upside down going 563 miles per hour.

The Memorial Plaza includes one marker showing the spot where the plane crashed. It’s a boulder which sits alone in a field.

Rosemary Fuga and her daughter came to look at the site Friday. Fuga’s son was working in the air traffic control tower and knew there had been a mayday call. Then, all other flights were grounded, but this one was still flying erratically and not answering calls.

“He called me, and he said, ‘Mom, get to the basement, because there is a plane coming over and we know it’s a terrorist,'” she said.

At the visitors center, you can hear the phone calls which told the passengers about the other terrorist attacks. That led to six minutes of struggle for the aircraft.

The plane was less than 20 minutes away from the U.S. Capitol when it was stopped.

Those brave people are remembered with their names listed at the Wall of Names.

Linda Hall, of Farmington, said she decided to bring her husband and two friends to Shanksville on the 15th anniversary of the attacks to honor those who died.

“I don’t think you really understand exactly what happened until you come here and you listen to the phones and you listen to the conversations that the people on board had with their families,” she said. “It’s just really tear-jerking.”

Hall added that she definitely recommends visiting here.

Forty candle lanterns will be carried to the Wall of Names Saturday night. There’s also a special observance at 9:45 a.m. Sunday.


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