Most Flt. 93 Kin Going to Ceremony
Mon Jul 15,11:45 AM ET

SOMERSET, Pa. (AP) - Relatives of nearly all those who died aboard United Flight 93 are expected to attend a memorial ceremony at the rural crash site on the anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks, organizers said Monday.

With the anniversary less than two months away, Somerset County officials released preliminary plans for a memorial service they described as simple and dignified to commemorate the crash near Shanksville.

Only about half the families have been to the site, most of them in the week following the Sept. 11 attacks. For many relatives, the anniversary will mark the first time they have seen the reclaimed strip mine where the plane crashed, killing 44 people, including the four hijackers.

Flight 93 was the only one of four planes hijacked Sept. 11 that did not claim a life on the ground. Investigators believe passengers fought with their captors before the plane, which may have been headed toward a target in Washington, crashed about 80 miles southeast of Pittsburgh.

As part of the ceremony, a 2,000-pound bell will toll 40 times in honor of the passengers and crew, said Susan Hankinson, the coordinator for the event.

Bells will also ring at the site of the World Trade Center and at the Pentagon ( news - web sites) in honor of every person who died when three hijacked planes struck those buildings.

The ceremony near Shanksville will include a performance by the Johnstown Symphony Orchestra and the 2nd Marine Corps Aircraft Wing Band and Honor Guard. Further details of the event were expected to be announced later.

Security will be tight at the Somerset County event, which will take place several hundred yards from the crash site, Hankinson said. Details about the families' lodging and travel were not being released for security reasons.

County officials also asked for help as they look for 100 buses to carry people several miles from a parking lot to the crash site.

Organizers estimate from 25,000 to 30,000 could gather for the ceremony. About 5,000 people attended a memorial the night after the crash.

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