Ambassador’s Remarks at 9/11 Commemoration Event

Governor, Mayor Babayan, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Thank you. And thank you all for gathering together at this lovely memorial to honor the lives of those who were taken from us on September 11, 2001 in New York City, Washington, DC and Pennsylvania.

Nine years ago, in the wake of devastating acts of terrorism, brave firefighters, police officers, and ordinary citizens heroically risked their lives to save others. Their dedication and sacrifice inspired all of us around the world to come together in a remarkable spirit of unity and compassion, because remembered the common threads of humanity that bind us.

President Obama has called upon all Americans to keep that spirit alive through voluntary public service – service that honors the lives we lost and the heroes who responded in our hour of need. By dedicating ourselves to public service, in big and small ways, we derive strength from tragedy, and hope from despair.

Last year at this time, I was honored to join you in a public service campaign to protect Ararat city’s trees. I am pleased to see that your trees are still standing tall. I am also gratified to hear that tomorrow you will again commemorate September 11 through various acts of public service in your town. Similarly, this afternoon I will join a group of American and Armenian volunteers in Nor Kharberd to assist a non-governmental organization, Habitat for Humanity Armenia, help build a house for a family in need. Together, through such acts of voluntary public service, we help create a better, more peaceful world. This is the most fitting way to honor those who sacrificed so much on September 11.

Please join me now in a moment of silence in memory of the lives of the victims and heroes of September 11.