September 11. 2018 10:34PM

Durham, UNH mark anniversary of terrorist attacks

Union Leader Correspondent

Bells tolled in Durham Tuesday morning to remember the lives lost on Sept. 11, 2001, when terrorists attacked America, killing nearly 3,000 people. (KIMBERLEY HAAS/Union Leader Correspondent)

A memorial bench outside Murkland Hall is dedicated to Professor Robert G. LeBlanc, ‘59, who was aboard United Airlines Flight 175 when it crashed into the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001. (KIMBERLEY HAAS/ Union Leader Correspondent)

DURHAM — Emergency responders and ROTC cadets gathered at the Durham Fire Department Tuesday morning to remember those who died in the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

Four University of New Hampshire alumni perished on 9/11, including retired UNH geography professor Robert G. LeBlanc, ’59, who was aboard United Airlines Flight 175 when it crashed into the World Trade Center.

There is a memorial bench outside Murkland Hall dedicated to LeBlanc.

Fire Chief David Emanuel said Tuesday the annual ceremony is held to pay respects to those who were lost on a morning that would change America forever.

“We come together with all our responding partners. We all get together to remember,” Emanuel said.

UNH Police Chief Paul Dean said he remembers the moments when he heard about the attack. He was heading into work a little later than usual to cover a shift.

“I remember it so vividly. I remember it was sunny out. I remember the sun was coming through the windows in my house,” Dean said. “Today is a day of remembrance for those responders who made the ultimate sacrifice.”

Of the 2,977 people killed in the Sept. 11 attacks, 412 were emergency workers in New York City who responded to the World Trade Center. This included 343 firefighters.

According to UNH records, LeBlanc graduated from Nashua High School in 1949 and entered UNH in 1953 after serving in the Air Force. He was a faculty member in the geography department from 1963 to 1999.

LeBlanc was traveling to a meeting when he died 17 years ago.

Alumni Judd Cavalier ’98, Jennifer Fialko ’94 and Timothy Stout ’83 were working at the World Trade Center buildings when they were killed in the 9/11 attacks.

The ceremony in Durham was one of a number held throughout the state to remember lives lost on Sept. 11, 2001.