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9/11 Motivates Mother, Son

In Glens Falls, a moment of silence recalling the lives lost on 9-11 is interrupted only by the tolling of a bell.

In Albany, a similar gesture as radio silence among emergency personnel is interrupted 5 times.

The symbol of a fallen firefighter in the line of duty

26 year old Mitchell Lake knew one of the firefighters lost on 9-11.  Mitchell was a volunteer in Floral Park with Keith Fairben.

"The last picture they have of him is leaning over to help some lady and going back into the towers," says Lake.

Mitchell was so moved by the events of 9-11, he joined the Air Force.

"I wanted to defend my nation," he says. "I wanted to protect it."

He just completed his time in the armed forces and served overseas in Iraq and Korea, and is back home in the Capital Region to join his mother, Susan, for a memorial walk she's helped organize at the Crossings in Colonie.  Their family lived just outside Manhattan on 9-11-01.

"If we walked to the corner of our block and looked west, the entire sky was black. You saw the smoke rising from the towers," says Susan Lake Ayala.

The family moved north 8 years ago, determined to keep the memory of 9-11, and the patriotism it spurred, alive.

"We support our military now like never before," says Susan, "and we've shown our resolve and shown we were not defeated. They did not weaken us. They've strengthened us."
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