NEW YORK - Thousands of people gathered at the World Trade Center site under crisp blue skies this morning for a solemn memorial ceremony to mark the 11th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks.

A bell rang out at 8:46 a.m. to mark the exact time that the first hijacked plane hit the north tower. The bell clanged again and again throughout the morning, and the crowd fell silent to remember the moments when the towers fell, when the Pentagon was hit and when Flight 93 went down in Pennsylvania.

Family and friends of those who were lost read the names of the nearly 3,000 victims. Tears spilled down many of the readers' cheeks, a poignant reminder that although more than a decade has passed, the wounds are still fresh for many.It was the first year no political speeches were made at the nation's largest Sept. 11 ceremony. Gov. Andrew Cuomo and former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani attended the ceremony, but only to observe and pay their respects.

For the complete Sept. 11 remembrance ceremony, click News 12 Extra on Optimum TV channel 612.