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This transcript is produced from the teletext subtitles that are generated live for Newsnight. It has been checked against the programme as broadcast, however Newsnight can accept no responsibility for any factual inaccuracies. We will be happy to correct serious errors.

Alison Hoglan

KIRSTY WALK:
It's around 8.30am on Saturday morning in the Californian town of Saratoga. Alice Hoglan is trying to make herself feel good.

ALISON HOGLAN:
Grief is a funny thing. It's been described to me as like being on a rollercoaster. My emotions go all over the place. I imagine that I am probably delaying some grief. You know you have to feel really lousy, but in a way, I don't really care if I ever feel good again. I want these messages to get out and I want Mark to be remembered in the way that he deserves to be remembered.

KIRSTY WALK:
Those messages are many, mainly to do with Alice's concerns over airline security. Since her son died on September 11th, Alice hasn't been at work. She's an air stewardess on United Airlines, the same airline her son Mark was on when he died. Today is her first day back at work. It's a big day for you. How have you been preparing?

ALISON HOGLAN:
Well, I've been updating my in-flight handbook, and pulling my uniform irons out of the closet, and getting my mind prepared. It's a good job, it's a fun job. I enjoy it very much. lots of wonderful people, it's exciting, there are lots of new things to talk about at work now.

KIRSTY WALK:
For the past few months, Alice has been staying with her brother and his wife in Saratoga, helping to take care of their twins and tiny triplets. The household's sleep has been constantly disturbed. So, on the morning of September 11th, Alice was having a lie-in. On the morning of September 11th, Mark Bingham was late, he had overslept and was now having to make a mad dash to Newark international airport. He was the last one to board the plane. flight 93 finally took off from Newark at 8.42am. Coffee and breakfast were served. 44 passengers were on board, including four hijackers. The pilots spoke to control. At 35,000 feet above Cleveland, the nightmare began as the hijackers rushed to the cockpit. A voice could be heard, presumably one of the pilots saying, "Get out of here!". Within six to eight minutes, UA flight 93 changed direction and began heading towards Washington. Now, having taken control, one of the hijackers makes an announcement, meant for the passengers, but picked up by air traffic control.

HIJACKER:
Hi this is the voice of the captain. Weżd like you all to remain seated there is a bomb aboard, and we are going to turn back to the airport. And they have our demands. So please remain quiet.

CONTROLLER:
United 93, I understand you have a bomb on board. Go ahead.

KIRSTY WALK:
It was at this time the phone calls began. Mark Bingham's call from the plane's air phone was to his mother.

ALICE HOGLAN:
I took the phone and I heard my son's voice and he said to me, "Mom, this is Mark Bingham." I knew from that he was trying to maintain composure, but I could tell he was a little rattled because he was giving me his first and last names. He said, "I want to let you know that I love you. I'm on a flight from Newark to San Francisco, and there are three guys on board who have taken over the plane and they say they have a bomb."

KIRSTY WALK:
No-one will ever know how the plan to attack the terrorists was hatched, but early indications from analysis of the recordings suggest it began in the front of the plane in first class. Mark Bingham was sitting next to Todd Beamer whose call to the operator suggests he was not talking to her, but someone else, possibly Mark, about jumping the guy with the bomb saying, "You ready? Ok, let's roll."

ALICE HOGLAN:
It sounded as if someone was speaking to him quietly, possibly sitting right next to him, then he came back on the line and said, "You believe me, don't you?" I said, "I believe you, who are these guys?" There was another long pause. I listened and then the phone went dead.

KIRSTY WALK:
In the fields of Somerset County, onlookers watched as the plane rocked and swayed before crashing. It left a crater in the soft earth in one field. No-one in the Hoglan household was aware of the tragedy unfolding at the World Trade Center and the Pentagon until they turned on the TV.

ALICE HOGLAN:
As soon as the phone call had ended so abruptly with Mark, we flipped on the television and I got on the phone, called United Airlines, and got the recorded message, "United flight 93 left Newark at 8.01am and will arrive San Francisco, gate 82 at 11.19am." And I knew that I had more current information than that.

KIRSTY WALK:
Of course, that information, as you say on the answer phone from the flight was wrong, because there had been a delay of 40 minutes. Which was crucial to what happened to events on that flight.

ALICE HOGLAN:
That delay made it possible for the family members of other loved ones to convey the events that had happened in New York and Washington to the people on flight 93. And that was a crucial occurrence for flight 93, that's what made the difference for flight 93.

KIRSTY WALK:
Crucially, Alice believes Mark and his fellow passengers' actions saved possibly hundreds of lives, preventing the plane being flown into Capitol Hill, the White House or some other target in Washington DC.

ALICE HOGLAN:
It does give me comfort to know that Mark spent his last moments engaged in a fierce fight. It gives me comfort to know that he called me from the plane, that his last thoughts were of his loved ones and expressing his love for us. Yes, it does give me comfort to know that Mark played a role in thwarting the ugly goal of the hijackers on flight 93.

KIRSTY WALK:
At 6'5", Mark Bingham, a Berkeley graduate and a republican was a dedicated player in San Francisco's first gay rugby team. He would often get into situations without thinking out the consequences. His friend still speaks about the time he shuffled into work with a black eye after tackling a mugger. He shrugged off their concerns, downplaying the whole incident. This was a man who liked to take risks. Who else but Mark would want to try bull running in Spain?

PRESIDENT GEORGE W BUSH:
Courage and optimism led the passengers on flight 93 to rush their murderers to save lives on the ground.

KIRSTY WALK:
The bumper stickers are appearing in America "Flight 93, let's roll". The same phrase capped President Bush's speech to the nation last month, the words symbolising courage. San Francisco may name a park after Mark Bingham. The actions of Mark Bingham and other passengers on flight 93 have called into question the traditional rules in the event of a hijacking. Up until now, the advice has been, "Don't resist."

ALICE HOGLAN:
We have been trained to be passive and compliant in the event of a hijacking. That technique worked pretty well during the 1970s when people would hijack a plane, make demands and then the plane would land, there would be some negotiations and eventually the situation would be defused. Clearly, passivity and compliance no longer work.

KIRSTY WALK:
Looking ahead for you, what brings you a sense of peace? Is it being with family, is it the thought of work?

ALICE HOGLAN:
I'm not sure that I have found a sense of peace. In fact quite the opposite. I feel very driven to get out the message to work hard, to kind of keep several steps away ahead of the grief, that's probably not the most mentally healthy way to deal with things. I guess I have to say that I have not found a sense of peace, although I imagine it will come. I don't feel that I should be resting well as long as my son is dead.

KIRSTY WALK:
What about the family here?

ALICE HOGLAN:
I'm very lucky to be a part of this household. it does give me a lot of satisfaction to be able to work with the new little babies in the house. one of them, Harrison, remind me so much of Mark when he was eight months old. It does help me to stay on keel here.

KIRSTY WALK:
As well as being their aunt, Alice has played a special role in the triplets' and twins' lives, helping her brother and his wife to become parents.

ALICE HOGLAN:
I carried one of the twin girls and the triplets, as it happened. It has really changed my life. Aside from having Mark Bingham as my son, perhaps having those babies for Vaughn and Cathy was the most important thing I've done.

KIRSTY WALK:
Are you going back to work campaigning heart?

ALICE HOGLAN:
I'm going back to work with a real mission.


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