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NYC Plans Solemn 9/11 Anniversary

World leaders will light an eternal flame, the governor will deliver the Gettysburg Address, and former Mayor Rudolph Giuliani will lead a reading of the names of 2,823 victims during a day of "simple and powerful" observances marking the anniversary of the World Trade Center attack.

"This will not be an ordinary day for anyone in New York," Mayor Michael Bloomberg said Tuesday in announcing a plan that "honors the memory of those we lost that day and that gives New Yorkers, Americans and people around the world the opportunity to remember and reflect."

Bloomberg said the daylong series of remembrances Sept. 11 will start early in the morning with bagpipe and drum processions that will begin in each of the city's five boroughs and converge at the World Trade Center site.

At 8:46 a.m., the time a hijacked airliner slammed into one of the twin towers, the city will observe a moment of silence.

Meanwhile, a newly discovered FBI surveillance tape is offering a rare glimpse inside the sounds and the voices of Sept. 11, reports CBS News Correspondent Byron Pitts. Similar audiotapes have been withheld by prosecutors as evidence in any future trials.

Stephen McArdle, an F.B.I. informant, was having breakfast at a hotel across the street from the World Trade Center when the first plane hit.

"That was an explosion," McArdle, who was wearing a wire, says on the tape.

Soon simple curiosity would turn into chaos and panic.

McArdle's recording, first obtained by the New York Daily News, captures the moment when victims began falling to their deaths.

"Oh! Those are people," an unknown male voice screams.

No one knew at the time that it was about to get worse.

The sound of the second plane striking the second tower is heard on the tape, and the fear and the screaming only intensifies.

"Everybody out of here! Everybody out!" says McArdle.

"That's my husband inside," says an unknown female voice.

Moments later the tape goes dead. FBI informant Stephen McArdle survived.

At the anniversary ceremony, Giuliani, who was praised for his courageous leadership after the attack, will begin the reading of the names of those killed.

"If anybody has a tie to those lost and is appropriate to start that out, it is Rudy Giuliani," Bloomberg said.

A cross-section of New Yorkers and people from around the world – including those who lost family members and co-workers in the attack — will follow Giuliani in reading the names.

Gov. George Pataki will read Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address, which includes the line: "We cannot dedicate, we cannot consecrate, we cannot hallow this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract."

The service is expected to conclude with a moment of silence just before 10:30 a.m. when the second of the twin towers fell.

Houses of worship will be encouraged to toll their bells, and family members of the victims will be invited to descend a ramp seven stories to the footprint of the twin towers. Each family will pick up a rose and place it in a vase for an arrangement that will be preserved for a permanent memorial.

"Sept. 11, that date, will live in people's hearts and minds for generations just as the date Dec. 7 will never be forgotten," Pataki said.

At sunset, world leaders — possibly including U.S. President George W. Bush — will light an eternal flame at a temporary memorial a few blocks from ground zero.

At candlelight vigils around the city, including Central Park, New Yorkers will be asked to reflect and listen to music from the city's orchestras.

"Our intent," Bloomberg said, "is to have a day of observances that are simple and powerful."

More than a dozen Broadway theaters will go dark that day, but Bloomberg said he expects that most businesses will remain open and that students will go to class. "We will carry on our responsibilities to our families and to our city," Bloomberg said.

Bond brokerage Cantor Fitzgerald, which lost 658 employees, plans a private remembrance in Central Park. The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which lost 75 employees, plans an afternoon memorial.

Although some details remain to be worked out, Sept. 11 ceremonies are also planned at the Pentagon and the rural site near Shanksville, Pennsylvania, where the other two hijacked planes crashed.

By Karen Matthews

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