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Vice President  Cheney Attends Inter-Faith Ceremony in NYC - 2003-09-11

Vice President Dick Cheney helped honor the victims of the September 11th attacks in a ceremony in New York City on the second anniversary of the disaster.

The inter-faith ceremony was the last official service of the day in New York City.

Vice President Cheney joined New York officials, survivors, and relatives and friends of victims, to remember the employees of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey who died in the attack. The Port Authority owns and operates the World Trade Center site.

Of the nearly 3,000 people who died in the attacks, 84 worked for the Port Authority. Some were police officers. Others were civilian employees.

Many perished after staying behind to help the massive evacuation of the towers they knew so well.

New Jersey Governor James McGreevey says they were all heroes. "They gave the world a vision of valor and selflessness that is the best face of America," he said.

Christy Ferer Levin's husband, Neil Levin, was the director of the Port Authority. He was among those who died in the attack. Mrs. Ferer Levin has spent the past two years serving as a liaison between the mayor's office and victims' families.

She says the relatives of people killed have dealt with the tragedy in different ways. But she views this second anniversary of the disaster as a turning point for the next phase of the grieving process.

"Today for me is a kind of commencement. But it is not about graduating from grief. If we love well, those we miss and mourn never leave us. What changes is that they live inside us, instead of outside in the world," she said. Toward the end of the service, the chief operating officer of the Port Authority, Ernesto Butcher, read the names of Port Authority employees who died in the 2001 attack as well as the names of those who died in an earlier attack, in 1993, against the World Trade Center.

"We remember Joseph Amatuccio. Christopher C. Amoroso. Jean A. Andrucki. Richard A. Aronow. Ezra Aviles," he said.

The inter-faith remembrance was one of many private services held around the city in addition to the ceremony at Ground Zero, where the World Trade Center once stood.