People across Oklahoma stopped Thursday to remember the 168 lives taken on April 19, 1995, when a truck bomb tore through the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building.
At the time, the bombing was the worst act of terrorism on American soil. The blast killed 168 people, including 19 children. Timothy McVeigh was convicted and executed for the bombing. His conspirator Terry Nichols was also convicted and sentenced to life in prison.
As they do every year, family members and loved ones of those lost gathered at the Oklahoma City National Memorial to honor the victims. The 17th Anniversary Remembrance Ceremony will began at 8:55 a.m. on the Outdoor Symbolic Memorial. Visitors then observed 168 seconds of silence at 9:02 a.m., the time the bomb exploded on April 19, 1995.
Gov. Mary Fallin spoke at the ceremony. Just before the ceremony began, she released a statement Thursday saying the horror, brutality and evil of the bombing can never be overstated, or forgotten.
"It was an attack that could have easily crippled our city, and left our people hopeless. It did not, " said Gov. Fallin. "Instead, the people of Oklahoma banded together – with the help of volunteers and well-wishers from across the nation and even the world – to overcome. We worked together; we comforted one another; and we rebuilt. Today we are a more prosperous city and a stronger people."
"On this anniversary, I would ask that all Oklahomans as well as all Americans remember and pray for the victims of this terrible tragedy and their families."
News 9 and News9.com will carry the Remembrance Ceremony live beginning at 8:55 a.m.