Kids of 9/11 get a voice on TV as 10th anniversary looms

Tue Aug 30, 2011 4:23pm EDT
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By Jill Serjeant

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Lucas Brody was just 10 years-old when he watched the Twin Towers fall to the ground one block from his New York home on September 11, 2001; Caitlin Langone was 12 when her police officer dad died that day trying to rescue people from the scene.

Millions of other children in the United States were not born in 2001, or were too young to remember -- still less comprehend -- the traumatic events of September11.

But as the United States prepares to mark the 10th anniversary of 9/11 with an onslaught of TV specials, children are finally being given a voice and a chance to ask pressing questions.

"It's a story that is not often heard -- 9/11 from a children's perspective. It tends to have been overlooked," said Janice Sutherland, producer of "Children of 9/11", to be broadcast on NBC on September 5.

Dozens of other TV documentaries, interviews and looks back at the attacks deal with everything from the recollections of then-President George W. Bush to the ongoing health problems of Ground Zero rescue workers, the hunt for Islamic militants and even how dogs helped victims recover from the catastrophe.

"Children of 9/11" follows a year in the lives of 11 kids who lost parents in the attacks on New York, Washington D.C, and in Flight 93 that was forced down in Pennsylvania.

In another program at youth-oriented channel Nickelodeon, award-winning journalist Linda Ellerbee lays out the facts for 6-14 year-olds who don't have first-hand recollections in the Nick News special "What Happened?: The Story of September 11 2001" airing on Thursday.

Many adults still find it too painful to relive that day and its graphic TV news footage. But Ellerbee, 66, said the "noise around the 9/11 anniversary is going to be too loud for kids to ignore -- and they'll get a lot of misinformation."   Continued...

<p>Lucas Brody, 20, is pictured in this undated publicity photograph released August 30, 2011. Brody is one of the persons featured in the Nickelodeon News special "What Happened?: The Story of September 11, 2001" which is set for broadcast September 1, 2011. Brody, watched the World Trade Center towers fall from his family's SoHo apartment. REUTERS/Courtesy Lucky Duck Productions/Handout</p>