In the aftermath of the September 11th attacks on New York City, as a Sergeant with the New York City Police Department's Unit tasked with providing security for visiting dignataries, I was assigned to a Congressional Delegation of senators visiting Ground Zero for the first time. Among those in the delegation was Senator Kennedy. After an emotional visit to Ground Zero and then to the Family Center a little further uptown, lunch was scheduled for the senators and the security detail on a floating Navy Hospital.
As all of the senators entered the mess area they sat together to eat before heading back to D.C. All, except Senator Kennedy. As he moved to sit with the other members of the delegation, he passed the security detail that had been with the delegation all day and asked if it would it be ok if he sat with us. Of course he was welcomed, and what a pleasure it was. He spoke to us from his heart about the loss that New York City had endured. All of us had known someone who died on 9/11; he said he did as well. It was a pleasure to meet him, unfortunately under sad circumstances, but his gesture to sit with us will always be remembered. God Bless.