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  • Portraits for the Homefront: The Story of Elizabeth Black
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    Where classical music crosses paths with rock and roll, world music, folk music and jazz. Listen to interviews with people who make good music here.
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WQED Commemorates Tenth Anniversary of September 11
"Return to Shanksville" honors crew and passengers of Flight 93.

WQED Commemorates Tenth Anniversary of September 11 in
Experience: Return to Shanksville

Host Michael Bartley to Blog and Invites Viewers to Share Stories

PITTSBURGH – It was a day that will never be forgotten – the terrorist attacks on the United States on Tuesday, September 11, 2001. WQED remembers with a special documentary Experience: Return to Shanksville www.wqed.org/returntoshanksville on Thursday, September 8 at 8 pm. Host Michael Bartley will share his thoughts online and invites the audience to contribute their 9/11 stories to a blog at www.wqed.org/returntoshanksville/blog.


On September 11, hijacked passenger planes filled with jet fuel attacked the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon in Washington. United Flight 93 was headed for another target in the capital but ended up crashing into a field in rural western Pennsylvania about 80 miles southeast of Pittsburgh.
Passengers and crew on Flight 93 acted in a heroic manner and brought the plane down so as not to cause another catastrophe. Since then, the people of Shanksville and the families of the passengers and crew of Flight 93 have formed a bond to forever remember those who perished.

WQED’s Michael Bartley goes to back to Shanksville ten years later to follow the construction phase of the permanent memorial honoring the 40 heroic passengers and crew. The memorial will be dedicated on September 10 and will be attended by President Obama.


“As I interviewed the people involved – family and first-responders - I saw how deeply events of that day affected Shanksville” said Bartley. “Everyone has a memory and they were willing to share it, especially the people of Shanksville, who are so intricately involved in being the caretakers of what they call this scared burial ground.”


Bartley interviews first-responders Rick King and Terry Shaffer, who as members of the Shanksville Volunteer Fire Department were some of the first people on the scene shortly after Flight 93 crashed. Also included in the documentary are interviews with Calvin Wilson of Virginia, whose brother-in-law Leroy Homer, Jr. was co-pilot of Flight 93; and Ken Nacke, a Baltimore police officer whose brother Louis was on board.


Today, 5,000 visitors a week from all over the world make their way to pay their respects at Shanksville. They travel through the beautiful Pennsylvania countryside and its small towns to see the open field and the sacred burial ground for forty heroes.


Even ten years later, the people of Shanksville remain committed as ever to preserving and honoring the memory of those who died when Flight 93 slammed into that open field on September 11.


Return to Shanksville was produced by Michael Bartley with photography by Paul Ruggieri.

WQED Pittsburgh has a proud history of honors, including 121 National and Mid-Atlantic Emmy® Awards, an Academy Award, and many, many others, including two Emmy® Awards for Station Excellence. WQED was founded in 1954 as the nation’s first community-supported broadcaster. The people of WQED create, produce and distribute quality programs, products and services to engage, inform, educate and entertain the public within their community and around the world. WQED Pittsburgh is one of the first broadcasters in the country to be fully high-definition (HD) in its studio and field production capabilities. It is the parent company of WQED-TV (PBS); WQED: The Neighborhood Channel; WQED: The Create Channel; Classical WQED-FM 89.3/Pittsburgh; Classical WQEJ-FM 89.7/Johnstown; local and national television and radio productions; WQED Interactive (www.wqed.org); and The WQED Education Department.

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Tag(s): Experience, Pennsylvania, Pittsburgh Area, Pittsburgh History

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