News Release

September 11 Family Members in Iraq


Family members of people killed in the September 11 attacks are currently in Iraq. The four-member delegation represents September 11 Families for Peaceful Tomorrows, an advocacy group seeking effective, non-violent alternatives to war and terrorism.

Other members of Peaceful Tomorrows in the U.S. are available for interviews including

DAVID POTORTI, who lost his brother, Jim, in the World Trade Center. Potorti is reachable at:

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Kelly lost her brother, Bill, at the World Trade Center on September 11. Kelly went to Iraq because she “wanted to understand that Iraq is not just one man, Saddam Hussein, but many, many people, with hopes and dreams and families, just like my brother.” Currently in Iraq, Kelly said: “I’ve found immediately an understanding of what we have gone through, which is something that you do not always find in America….”

Olsen, who lost her sister, Laurie Neira, on Flight 11, said: “I feel a deep sense of moral responsibility, both as a citizen of the global community, and as a person who lost a loved one on September 11, to promote the message of peace — by bearing witness to the suffering of innocent people, as well as by working toward creating an opening for constructive, non-violent approaches to dealing with conflict in our world. This I feel is the most meaningful way I can honor the memory of my sister.” The group visited the Amariya bomb shelter, where several hundred Iraqis were killed in 1991 by U.S. bombing. Olsen, a nurse from Newburyport, Mass., said: “It’s devastating. The concrete and the wires reminded me of Ground Zero.”

Tinley lost her uncle, Michael, at the World Trade Center. She said, “My hope is that all people will come to realize that loss of more human life will not solve the problems of the world.”

Terry Kay Rockefeller lost her sister, Laura, at the World Trade Center. She said: “Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. recognized the connections between war and poverty, between war and the diminishing of human rights. We hope our search for non-violent alternatives to war in Iraq will help to build trust within the global community so that it becomes possible to truly end terrorism and war, in all of their manifestations.” The Peaceful Tomorrows group derives its name from King’s assertion that “wars are poor chisels for carving out peaceful tomorrows.”

For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy:
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167