Madeline Amy Sweeney
The following news item appeared in the Boston, Massachusetts, Herald for Saturday, September 22, 2001, and speaks of another courageous member of Clan Sweeney:
FLIGHT 11 ATTENDANT RECALLED FOR 'GRACE AND BRAVERY'
The family of flight attendant Madeline Amy Sweeney yesterday praised her "remarkable grace and bravery" for calling colleagues as hijackers slit one passenger's throat and ambushed the cockpit of American Airlines Flight 11 shortly before it crashed into the World Trade Center.
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In a statement read by her brother-in-law Bob Sweeney, a former Boston Bruin, the family said the call she made from the flight provided valuable information to the FBI and was instrumental in identifying the hijackers.
"My family is very proud of her," Bob Sweeney said. "Of course, she tried to help, as she always did throughout her life. If you knew Amy, you know that helping was like breathing to her. Even in those last moments, she helped enormously.
"After giving as full a report as possible of her position, Amy took a deep breath and very calmly spoke the words 'Oh my God' one time, in her own amazement at the gravity of her own situation," the statement said. "She did not speak in fear."
It added: "Those of us who knew and loved Amy, who love her still, wanted the world to understand that right to the end, she kept her head and did her job. She was helping those in her care and those in her country. She was heroic and brave all the way."
Bob Sweeney was flanked by several family members, including Amy's husband, Michael, as well as her brother, Billy, her father, Robert, and five sisters-in law, Patti, Cheryl, Rose, Jacqui and Terri, at a press conference at the Holiday Inn Boxborough, not far from the family's Acton, Massachusetts, home.
Family members told reporters that Amy Sweeney loved skiing, the ocean, travel and children. She was the mother of two, Anna 5 and Jeff 4.
"She loved life," Patti Sweeney said. "She lived it to the fullest."
A native of Nashua, NH, Amy Sweeney had been a flight attendant for 14 years.
Donations to the Madeline A. Sweeney Memorial Fund may be sent to Middlesex Savings Bank, c/o Linda Cetrone, 577 Massachusetts Avenue, Acton, Massachusetts 01762, U.S.A.
As we continue to watch developments in this horrible scenario, many stories unfold daily. The story of Amy Madeline Sweeney will always stand out as a woman who was a professional, a wife and mother, and a person who obviously put those around her ahead of herself. And she left a legacy for all Sweeney's to remember as we go through our various stations in life: "She did not speak in fear".
Another reason to be justifiably proud of the name Sweeney.
Thanks to Edward J. Sweeney for this article.
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