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CNN Today

President Bush Dedicates Oklahoma City Bombing Museum

Aired February 19, 2001 - 2:05 p.m. ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

NATALIE ALLEN, CNN ANCHOR: "Awesome" and "painful." That's how some survivors of the Oklahoma City bombing describe today's event, the dedication of a national museum in honor of those who died in the worst terrorist attack on U.S. soil, which we just brought you the dedication.

And joining us now with more, CNN national correspondent Tony Clark, who's from Oklahoma City -- Tony.

TONY CLARK, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Natalie, right now, the ceremony dedication ceremony's wrapping up, Carmen Ponder Morris (ph), 6th grade student, speaking about the hope of the future. And really that has been the emphasis this not only remembering those who were killed in the attack on April 19, 1995, but also the hope, the promise for the future, to learn from what happened here.

This ceremony itself began with 168 seconds of silence for the victims of the attack.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: ... all of us changed forever.

(MOMENT OF SILENCE)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CLARK: At the conclusion of the moments of silence, it was said, "It is a long time. There are many, many lives."

President George W. Bush and his wife, Laura Bush, arrived here for the dedication ceremonies. Before coming up to the dedication, they took a brief tour of the museum, the president saying that it is a very powerful, a very moving place. He said "it is a place where Americans can't help but be touched and learn from what happened here." "Oklahoma City," he said, "will always be one of those places where the worst and the best came to pass." He said that "evil destroys and good saves." And he said, "this is a place where people should be taught the difference between good and evil." He said, "we must teach our children to do unto other in the memory of love."

The president here dedicating this memorial today, saying that this is a place that Americans will long remember. The president is going to be wrapping up -- the ceremony now wrapping up. The museum itself to be opened to the public today. For the past three days, three or four days, survivors of the attack, and also those who lost loved ones and rescue workers, have been allowed to go through the museum. It is, in the words of a mother who lost a daughter here, it is a place of hope and a sign of thanks to those who gave hope to Oklahoma when they thought that there was no hope -- Natalie.

ALLEN: Tony Clark. We thank you, Tony, from Oklahoma City. s TO ORDER A VIDEO OF THIS TRANSCRIPT, PLEASE CALL 800-CNN-NEWS OR USE OUR SECURE ONLINE ORDER FORM LOCATED AT www.fdch.com

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