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U.S. News
Bush signs legislation for Flight 93 memorial

Wednesday, September 25, 2002

By Post-Gazette National Bureau

WASHINGTON -- President Bush yesterday signed into law a bill sponsored by Rep. John Murtha, D-Johnstown, to establish a permanent national memorial at the Somerset County site where United Airlines Flight 93 crashed Sept. 11, 2001, but it could be Sept. 11, 2007, before it's dedicated.

The law provides up to three years for a design plan to be recommended to Congress and the U.S. Department of the Interior for approval. Construction could take two more years.

With Bush at the brief Oval Office ceremony were Murtha and Pennsylvania's two GOP senators, Arlen Specter and Rick Santorum.

Murtha said he was pleased the law was passed and signed "so soon after the one-year anniversary. The heroes of Flight 93 certainly deserve a national memorial recognizing the supreme sacrifice they made in fighting back so courageously against terrorism."

The Bush administration believes the hijackers of Flight 93 intended to fly the Boeing 757, bound for California and loaded with fuel, into a target in the nation's capital and that the passengers thwarted that effort, saving many lives and perhaps the Capitol or White House.

Murtha said an advisory commission of Flight 93 families, historians and the local community around Shanksville will work with the National Park Service to come up with a design and theme for the memorial.

No cost has been decided; a combination of tax dollars and private money is expected to pay for the memorial.

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