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Obama observes 9/11 moment of silence

President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama gathered with White House staff on the South Lawn on Tuesday to observe a moment of silence in memory of the victims of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

After a chorus completed singing the national anthem, a bell chimed at 8:45 a.m., marking the moment when American Airlines Flight 11 hit the World Trade Center's north tower 11 years ago.

The president, in a dark suit, and the first lady, in a purple overcoat and dress, strode to the center of the presentation and bowed their heads for an extended moment of silence. White House staff flanked them on both sides. 

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The president and the first lady then stood with their hands over their hearts as a bugler played "Taps," the ceremonial call sounded at military funerals and memorial services.

The president and the first lady then strode, holding hands, back into the White House.

The president is scheduled to attend a memorial ceremony at the Pentagon later Tuesday, and then spend time with wounded soldiers at the Walter Reed Medical Center in Bethesda, Md.