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September 11 Memorial: Remembering the victims who died at the World Trade Center and Pentagon, and in Pennsylvania

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Deborah A. Ramsaur

Age: 45

Hometown: Annandale, Va., USA

Occupation: Civilian employee, U.S. Army

Location: Ground, Pentagon

Profile:

On most Saturdays, Deborah A. Ramsaur, of Annandale, spent the day taking her two young children to soccer games and swimming lessons.

But this weekend, Ramsaur's husband, John, took Ann, 7, and Brian, 5, to an international children's festival -- alone.

Their mother, Debbie, 45, was one of the victims unaccounted for after the attack at the Pentagon. She had worked there as a civilian secretary for the Army for about a year, though she had been with for the Army for 14 years.

"She loved the job," John Ramsaur, 58, said. "She loved the Army."

The Ramsaurs met in Frankfurt, Germany, where they both worked for the Department of Defense. They were married for eight years and returned to the United States in 1999.

Outside her job, the Rochester, N.Y., native devoted most of her time to her children and her community. She wrote and typed the newsletter for the PTA at Belvedere Elementary School in Falls Church, and served as the secretary of her Sleepy Hollow Woods community.

Most of all, she doted on her children.

"She was a supermom," John said. "She was a great mom. She liked going to the park, taking them to soccer games and swimming lessons. She was outgoing, organized and hardworking."

He went on the Internet to find ways to help his children cope with bereavement. He decided to "deal straight with them" and not hide anything. He said the school provided counselors and some of his daughter's classmates wrote letters of condolences.

"We'll make it. They're great. Kids are really resilient. . . . They're sad some of the time. They want to do things. Then they stop and think about it and they're sad."

-- Yolanda Woodlee

Source: The Washington Post, AP and washingtonpost.com

The profiles in this feature were written in the months following Sept. 11, 2001.

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Timeline

A day after the 9/11 attacks a makeshift memorial was created on the Arlington Memorial Cemetery fence. Seven years later, the first 9/11 memorial is opening.

Related Coverage:

3-Dimensional Virtual Memorial

Victims Remembered in Maryland

One Family's Loss

Stepping Through the Ashes

Pentagon Under Attack

Five Year Anniversary Coverage


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