Campus to host events commemorating 10th anniversary of Sept. 11 attacks

Rice remembers 9/11
Campus to host events commemorating 10th anniversary of Sept. 11 attacks

Rice News staff

This weekend, Rice University will host a number of events to mark the anniversary of Sept. 11, 2001.

”It is fitting that we should pause on this 10th anniversary to remember those who lost their lives on that terrible day and to honor those who have died or risked death ever since to defend our country,” Rice University President David Leebron said.


On Sept. 10 the Rice football team will play its home opener against Purdue University. The Owls will hold a special pregame salute to the men and women of the military and the country’s first responders. All season, members of the military and first responders, along with their families, will receive free tickets to Rice home football games.

Also on Saturday a number of Rice students will participate in the First Ladies’ Eco Bash on the Bayou, which will take place from 8 to 11 a.m. on Braes Bayou’s north- and south-bank trails, 8505 Cypress St. First lady of Houston Kathy Hubbard and former first ladies Andrea White and Port Commissioner Elyse Lanier will lead a community beautification project.

“The First Ladies’ Eco Bash on the Bayou is intended to bring together students from a variety of backgrounds through a shared commitment to service,” Community Involvement Center Director Mac Griswold said. “This common desire to serve others is a foundational element of many faiths and also shared by those of no particular spiritual calling. By coming together in service, participants will be honoring and planting a tree for each of the 2,998 lives lost as a result of the Sept. 11 attacks.”

The project is just one of numerous events hosted by the city of Houston to commemorate the 10th anniversary of Sept. 11. For more information or to participate in any of the activities, visit or

President remembers 9/11

For President David Leebron, the tragic events of Sept. 11, 2001 struck close to home.

At the time, Leebron was dean of Columbia Law School in New York City. After learning of the attacks, he frantically phoned home, worried that his wife, Y. Ping Sun, who had an office in the north tower of the World Trade Center, had gone to work.

It was impossible to get through, so Leebron hurried home and was relieved to find Sun still there, delayed because it was the first day of kindergarten for their daughter, Merissa.

Leebron remembers the situation in New York quickly turning chaotic, and eventually learned of the day’s terrible toll, which included at least one of his former students.

”The deaths on Sept. 11 were a terrible blow first and foremost to their families, but also to our nation as a whole,” Leebron said. ”In the time since this vicious attack, we have learned all too well the high cost of defending our freedoms and our security, both in terms of the military losses of brave young women and men and the compromises we must strike in our daily lives and liberties to assure our safety.”

At Rice, flags will be flown at half mast on Sept. 11 and the Rice Chapel bells will ring four times: at 7:46 a.m. Central time, when Flight 11 hit the north tower of the World Trade Center; at 8:03 a.m., when Flight 175 hit the south tower of the World Trade Center ; at 8:37 a.m., when Flight 77 hit the Pentagon; and at 9:03 a.m. , when Flight 93 crashed near Shanksville, Penn.

At noon, members of the Rice community are encouraged to join in the nationwide “Moment of Remembrance.” Governments, businesses, houses of worship, railways, fire and police departments across the country will ring bells and sound sirens in a minute of reflection at 1 p.m. Eastern time, noon Central time, 11 a.m. Mountain time and 10 a.m. Pacific time.

At 4 p.m. the Rice Chorale will perform in the Shepherd School of Music’s Stude Concert Hall. Director of Choral Ensembles and Professor of Music Thomas Jaber will lead a time of reflection and dedication as he directs the Chorale’s performance of Mozart’s “Requiem.”

At 8 p.m. the Rice community will hold a memorial vigil on Rice’s Central Quad. The event is open to all faith and non-faith groups and will include a reading of Tony Kushner’s “A Prayer for New York” and a performance of the national anthem.

“This vigil is first, a remembrance — a commemoration of those we all lost, whether close or distant,” Event Organizer and Duncan College junior Lawrence Lin said. “Secondly, this vigil reminds us that we share common sympathies. These sympathies help us connect beyond our differences. They serve to strengthen our community and ultimately strengthen our response to those who attempt to terrorize us.”

Rice Program Council’s Arts and Entertainment Committee via the Passport to Houston program is sponsoring “Rice Night at the Symphony” Sept. 16 at 8 p.m. in Jones Hall. The concert will feature a new work commissioned by Shepherd School Professor and Chair of Music and Theory Pierre Jalbert to commemorate the anniversary of Sept. 11.

“I hope that the Rice community will join me in pausing for a moment on the anniversary of 9/11 to remember those who were lost,” Leebron said.  ”As we do, let us embrace the qualities of compassion and respect for human life and dignity that will prevail in our battle against terrorism.”



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