The former Vice President traveled to Shanksville, Pa. on the anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
Following a trip to New York City, Biden stopped by the memorial to honor the brave people who perished on Flight 93, the hijacked plane that had crashed in a field while on route to Washington, D.C.. The passengers on the flight fought to regain control of the hijacked plane, resulting in the deadly crash that killed all 40 people on board.
The 2020 Democratic Presidential nominee spoke with families of the victims of Flight 93 but did not make a formal address while at the memorial. According to the New York Times, while at the event, Biden “laid a wreath of white flowers at the Flight 93 National Memorial” before meeting with several relatives of those who died on the flight.
While speaking with three families of Flight 93 victims, Biden spoke about his own losses in an attempt to connect with the relatives, mentioning that “[the grief] never goes away,” according to CBSN Pittsburgh. The families were identified by the Biden campaign as relatives of LeRoy Homer, the First Officer of Flight 93; Loraine Bay, a flight attendant; and Louis Nacke, a passenger on the flight.
Biden had decided to reserve the day for remembering and honoring the thousands of lives lost in the Sept. 11 attacks, according to the New York Times, promising he would not “talk about anything other than 9/11.”
The former Vice President added, “It’s a solemn day. That’s how we’re going to keep it,” before leaving the airport in Delaware. Mr. Biden has had prior experience with grief, as he has suffered several family tragedies— most recently and notably, his eldest son’s death due to brain cancer in 2015.
While the President was also scheduled to visit Shanksville, his trip did not overlap with the Democratic nominee’s visit to the Flight 93 National Memorial.
Following his visit to the Shanksville memorial, Vice President Biden delivered a Bundt cake, pastries, and beer to the local fire station according to CBSN Pittsburgh. Biden had promised to return to the station in 2012 during his last visit to the Shanksville Volunteer Fire Department.
Before leaving the fire station, Biden and his wife, Jill, paid honors to a large wooden cross draped with an American flag while firefighters and their families watched the solemn event.
Sources: New York Times, CBSN Pittsburgh.