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America's New War: Families Missing Loved Ones Gather at the NY Armory

Aired September 15, 2001 - 22:42   ET

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


THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
AARON BROWN, CNN ANCHOR: We rather suspect that hope is running out a bit for those many people who have gathered at the Armory in New York. This is the place that has been set up to -- for people who believe someone is missing to come and try to get information about them. It's where Elizabeth Cohen has spent the last couple days, talking with those people, those men and women, and she joins us with some of their stories. Elizabeth, good evening to you.

ELIZABETH COHEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Aaron, good evening. We just heard from Gary Tuchman at ground zero, which is the site of the physical devastation, and here at the Armory is the scene of emotional devastation.

This is where families come who are still missing people. They come in, they give information, eight pages worth of details about the person's physical appearance, they are then shown two lists. One is a list of people who have been found in the hospital, another is a list of people who have been found deceased.

We are going to talk with two people right now, who have been in the Armory today. Paul Rodriguez is looking for his uncle, Juan Garcia, and he is joined by Joanne Garcia, who is Juan Garcia's daughter. Tell me -- I see on this poster here that your uncle was employed by Cantor Fitzgerald, a major bond company. I've seen that name so many times, I know you've met with some of the employees. How are they feeling?

PAUL RODRIGUEZ, UNCLE MISSING IN WTC: Right now, everyone is a bit despondent right now, you know, because as the days roll by, you know, hope is starting to dwindle a bit. But you know, everyone is still very optimistic that we are going to find everybody.

COHEN: And have people been helpful with each other since all of these missing people worked in the same company?

RODRIGUEZ: Actually, they've been extremely helpful. For the most part, you know, when people are looking at the sign, you know, they feel like that Juan is part of the family, so to speak, and in theory he is. Everybody, you know, asks have you seen this, you know, did your father know this person, that person? So yes, everyone has been extremely helpful, and we have been reciprocating that to them.

COHEN: Joanne, your father has... BROWN: Elizabeth, Elizabeth...

COHEN: Yes, Aaron.

BROWN: Let me interrupt you for a second. We're going to come back to you in a second. Stay where you are, OK?

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