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CNN Student News Transcript: September 11, 2008

  • Story Highlights
  • Watch as scientists send particles down a tunnel at the speed of light
  • Learn about a memorial at the Pentagon for victims of the 9/11 attacks
  • Meet a young cancer survivor who's raising awareness about the disease
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(CNN Student News) -- September 11, 2008

Quick Guide

World's Biggest Science Project - Watch as scientists send particles down a tunnel at the speed of light.

9/11 Remembered - Learn about a memorial at the Pentagon for victims of the 9/11 attacks.

Childhood Cancer Awareness - Meet a young cancer survivor who's raising awareness about the disease.



CARL AZUZ, CNN STUDENT NEWS ANCHOR: It's Thursday, September 11th, and we're glad you're getting your day started with CNN Student News. From the CNN Center, I'm Carl Azuz.

First Up: World's Biggest Science Project

AZUZ: First up, we're one step closer to smashing some particles together at the speed of light. You might remember our report about this experiment earlier in the week. The goal is to study theories about the start of the universe. Critics argue it could cause a black hole. Researchers say if that happens, it won't pose a real problem. But we're not there yet. For now, Atika Shubert shows us the first moments of this massive science project.


SCIENTISTS: Zero. Nothing. Yes! Yes!

ATIKA SHUBERT, CNN REPORTER: This is it: 14 years and 10 billion dollars in the making for a flash of light on a computer screen. But it's no ordinary blip. This is the first particle beam to circle around the full 27 kilometers, or 17 miles, of the LHC, Large Hadron Collider. It's all taking place 100 meters, more than 300 feet, underneath the idyllic countryside of the French-Swiss border. The plan: get two beams going in opposite directions at nearly the speed of light, smash them together and recreate the first moments after the Big Bang. For many here, the culmination of a lifetime of work.

JAMES STRAIT, CERN SCIENTIST: It's very gratifying to see that it worked as well as it did. To get it around on the first try in an hour is very impressive.

SHUBERT: This is the CERN Control Center, the hub of the operation watching over the Big Bang Machine at work. From here, scientists track the beam's progress, guiding it past massive detectors to take snapshots like this, hoping to track down never-before-seen subatomic particles, and possibly more.

BRIAN COX, CERN SCIENTIST: It could turn out to be the most exciting scientific experiment ever attempted. It really could. It's not an exaggeration to say, if we discover things like extra dimensions, some of the exotic things that we may find with the LHC, then this will be remembered forever as a turning point in our understanding of the universe.

SHUBERT: The excitement is catching. There are more than 10,000 scientists from 85 countries. Scientists in Chicago held an early morning "pajama party" to watch the first live pictures of the collider at work. But the first particle collisions won't happen for several more weeks. The Big Bang Machine won't be running at full capacity until next year, at least. Those in suspense for the answers to the universe will have to wait a little longer. Atika Shubert, CNN, at CERN on the French-Swiss border.


I.D. Me

GEORGE RAMSAY, CNN STUDENT NEWS: See if you can I.D. Me! I'm one of the world's largest office buildings, covering 34 acres in Arlington County, Virginia. I opened in January of 1943 after 16 months of construction that cost $83 million. The five floors of my five-sided structure serve as the headquarters for the U.S. Department of Defense. I'm the Pentagon, and a trip around my corridors would take you more than 17 miles!

9/11 Remembered

AZUZ: A special event is taking place at the Pentagon today: the dedication of a memorial honoring the lives of those people killed there, September 11th, 2001. Of course, today marks the seventh anniversary of those attacks, when nearly 3,000 people lost their lives in New York, Pennsylvania and the famous military building. Barbara Starr gives us a tour of this new memorial and talks to the architect who designed it.


BARBARA STARR, CNN REPORTER: Water, sunlight and trees. It's being called "The Park." There was horror that morning when hijackers crashed American Airlines Flight 77 into the Pentagon, 184 souls lost. Now, on this 9/11, the first major memorial at one of the attack sites is being dedicated. Tom Heidenberger's wife and young Thomas's mother Michelle was a flight attendant.

THOMAS HEIDENBERGER, JR., LOST MOM ON 9/11 : She was a great woman, she was my best friend. It was very hard losing her.

THOMAS HEIDENBERGER, LOST WIFE ON 9/11: The best way to explain Michelle is to look at Thomas, and see how proud I am.

STARR: A bench, a tree and water pool for each victim.

KEITH KASEMAN, MEMORIAL ARCHITECT: This place is really all about the visitor's thoughts, your interpretation when you visit this place.

STARR: Architect Keith Kaseman placed it all in lines marking their ages.

KASEMAN: When we learned there was five children who lost their lives that day, that's really what sparked the idea.

STARR: One man already had made history. This is the bench commemorating the life of Max Beilke, who died inside the Pentagon. But decades ago as a young man, Max Beilke was the last U.S. combat soldier to leave Vietnam. Visitors will discover details as they explore. To read a name on the bench of a Pentagon victim, you must face the building. For someone on the plane, you read the name facing the sky. Seven years later, this is one of the most guarded sites in the country. But it's estimated now one to two million people will visit each year to pause, reflect and remember. Barbara Starr, CNN, the Pentagon.


AZUZ: That's certainly not the only event taking place today. In New York, people have the opportunity to sign two steel beams that will be used in a national memorial. And out in Arizona, a group of students is using debris from Ground Zero to create their own tribute. Each of these bowls, about 2,000 in all, have been scored with a piece of wreckage from the World Trade Center. The students plan to sell the bowls and donate all the proceeds to help families in New York struggling with health care concerns.

Childhood Cancer Awareness

AZUZ: Switching gears now, this Saturday marks National Childhood Cancer Awareness Day. Every year, more than 12,000 young people are diagnosed with this disease; more than 40,000 are currently in treatment. Kennedy Bougher, who you're about to meet, is not one of them, but she used to be. She fought and beat cancer, and she wants to help others do the exact same thing. Cheryl Preheim of affiliate KUSA in Denver, Colorado introduces us to this extraordinary young woman.


CHERYL PREHEIM, KUSA REPORTER: Every night, you will see Kennedy Bougher at the kitchen table doing homework.

KENNEDY BOUGHER, CANCER SURVIVOR: I like doing all the work again.

PREHEIM: You will never hear her complain about it.

BOUGHER: Learning a lot of stuff that last year I wasn't really doing.

PREHEIM: Bone cancer kept Kennedy from going to 5th grade: two years and more medical procedures than she can count; one bead for every treatment.

BOUGHER: Almost makes me feel like I am there.

PREHEIM: Cancer didn't feel so isolating when Kennedy shared it online.

BOUGHER: I hear from every state.

PREHEIM: And many countries. A huge number of online visits.

BOUGHER: 1,759,000.

PREHEIM: It showed her cancer's wide and awful reach. They had to believe there was a purpose.

BOUGHER: I also think God chose me for a reason.

PREHEIM: That belief took them to the nation's capital.

STACY MORIARTY, KENNEDY'S MOM: To get a database and funding for childhood cancer.

PREHEIM: Senator Hillary Clinton was one who signed through the first ever National Childhood Cancer Awareness Day.

BOUGHER: Most people don't even think about it. They don't want to, that kids do get cancer. And this is a day just to realize and help as much as you can.

MORIARTY: It can be the beginning of something huge for funding and awareness and support and education.

PREHEIM: Through adversity, they have learned the power of one day.

MORIARTY: I have a day to hold my child, to hug her and kiss her and to rub her head when her hair comes in.

BOUGHER: If I could rewind all of this and not have cancer, I wouldn't, because I wouldn't have met all the people and to be a survivor.

PREHEIM: Kennedy studies now with a goal to help others, grateful for the chance to think about what she wants to be when she grows up.

BOUGHER: Maybe being an oncologist.

PREHEIM: Cheryl Preheim, 9News.



AZUZ: You know you can watch great stories like that one online at But what you might not know is that you can view it in full screen from the site. All you need is the latest version of Flash installed on your computer. Just go to the page, start the streaming video, then double click it. Voila! My ugly mug in full screen!

Before We Go

AZUZ: Before we go, the hills are alive with the sound of... munching? That's because these furry fieldhands are on the loose! Normally, you'd expect to tackle wild weeds with a man-made mower. But the city of Los Angeles turned to animal assistance to clear some overgrown areas in downtown. Officials say the gardening goats are cheaper and more environmentally friendly than humans. Plus, you don't have to give them a lunch break. But before you hire this herd to get out of mowing your own lawn, check out the price tag: $3,000!



AZUZ: But hey, if you've got the cash, it's not a baaa-aaa-aaad deal. You said you wanted the puns back! That's where we hoof it on out of here. I'm Carl Azuz.

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