ABC News’ Devin Dwyer (@devindwyer) reports:
As the nation grapples with a lagging economy, and the destruction from Hurricane Irene, President Obama invoked the memory of Sept. 11, 2001, in his weekly address, calling on Americans to unite through acts of service in their communities.
With the ten year anniversary of 9/11 just two weeks away, Obama proclaimed the date a National Day of Service and Remembrance, saying service is the best way to honor victims and “to reaffirm the strength of our nation with acts of service and charity.”
“Even the smallest act of service, the simplest act of kindness, is a way to honor those we lost,” Obama said, “a way to reclaim that spirit of unity that followed 9/11.”
Obama acknowledged “great challenges” facing the country, including the lingering economic crisis and wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, but said solving the issues cannot be done by the federal government alone.
“The strength of America has always been the character and compassion of our people,” Obama said. “So as we mark this solemn anniversary, let’s summon that spirit once more.
"And let’s show that the sense of common purpose that we need in America doesn’t have to be a fleeting moment; it can be a lasting virtue—not just on one day, but every day.”
The president and first lady will commemorate the 10th anniversary of the attacks by visiting all three sites — Shanksville, Pa.; New York City, N.Y.; and Washington, D.C. — where Americans lost their lives.