Fw: VPOTUS travel pool report #4 -- fire station OTR and arrival at intrepid

From: Shear, Michael [mailto:xxx@email.com]
Sent: Friday, September 11, 2015 01:05 PM
To: Goodman, Meghan K. EOP; Spector, Stephen I. EOP
Subject: VPOTUS travel pool report #4 -- fire station OTR and arrival at intrepid

VPOTUS arrived at Rescue 1 in Manhattan at 12:26 pm where there was a crowd of people waiting for him, most of them first responders. VPOTUS worked his way through the crowd, hugging some of the women he met, and shaking hands vigorously with many of the first responders.

At one point, he kissed a woman on the cheek, gave her a hug and said: "What people don't understand is that anniversaries are bitter sweet."

He hugged another woman and said: "People don't know, these anniversaries don't get any easier. It all comes back."

Your pooler did not here most of what VPOTUS said because we were held back a good distance and it was noisy. But at one point, he sat down with a woman the WH later identified as Lorraine Foley, whose son, Gerard T. Nevins, was a firefighter at Rescue One and died on September 11, 2001.

At one point, your pooler heard VPOTUS say: "Took me a long long long time." He also shook hands with a the head of Andrew Cuomo's detail, who was introduced to VPOTUS by Mr. Cuomo as another son of Ms. Foley.

"I know it's hard day for you," VPOTUS said to him.

Mr. Cuomo arrived at the station a few moments after VPOTUS, and with him was Billy Joel, the singer, wearing a leather jacket. All three men worked the crowd further, going deep into the station and back out again, shaking hands and doing more hugging.

At one point, VPOTUS was talking to someone, apparently about sons and daughters, and told a long story about how granddaughters are better than grandsons.

"Grandsons a aren't bad. Granddaughters are better," VPOTUS said. He then told a story about how he was recently visiting with one of his granddaughters at college and she said "Pop, can we hold hands?" He expressed astonishment at the idea that a grown woman would still want to hold hands.

As they worked their way out of the main entrance to the fire station, VPOTUS and Mr. Cuomo and Mr. Joel were given navy FDNY baseball caps. All three put on the hats, though VPOTUS quickly took his off. They walked over to a row of motorcycles to admire them. Billy Joel told VPOTUS something, which made VPOTUS put his arm around him.

Your pool was then rushed back to the vans, which took off for the next stop at 12:50.

At 12:55, we arrived at a ceremony in the shadow of the Intrepid Sea, Air, and Space Museum, where VPOTUS was scheduled to give remarks to kick off the annual 9/11 Memorial Motorcycle Ride Kickoff event. This event is open press.


Michael D. Shear
White House Correspondent
The New York Times

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