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Terrorist act claims priest administering the last rites

Among the confirmed dead following Tuesday's terrorist attack on the World Trade Centre and the Pentagon was Fr Michael Judge, chaplain to the New York Fire Department.

Catholic World News reports that Fr Judge was at the base of the towers in a triage centre, administering the last rites, when the first building collapsed.

Also among the dead was David Angell, executive producer of the TV show Frasier, and his wife, Lynn, who were aboard American Airlines Flight 11 from Boston. Angell was the brother of Bishop Kenneth Angell of Burlington, Vermont. The Angell family had gathered on Cape Cod in Massachusetts last weekend for a wedding.

New York's Cardinal Edward Egan, who rushed to the scene and administered the rites for the dying to dozens of victims, said firefighters and policemen were "dead in great numbers" as they helped victims in the buildings which collapsed around them.

Special prayer services and Masses were held throughout the day at St. Patrick's Cathedral. St. Vincent's Catholic Hospital, just blocks away from the World Trade Centre, also took in a majority of the victims being treated.