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HARRISBURG (May 2, 2002) - The Pennsylvania Bar Association Young Lawyers Division today presented its prestigious Liberty Bell Award to Lisa Beamer, founder and president of The Todd M. Beamer Foundation Inc. Beamer accepted the award and addressed the YLD Liberty Bell Award luncheon at the Hershey Lodge and Convention Center in Hershey.

Beamer’s late husband, Todd, was one of the heroes of Flight 93, which crashed in an open field in western Pennsylvania after being hijacked by terrorists. Prior to the crash, Todd Beamer and others overtook the terrorists and stopped the plane from crashing into a major population center. Beamer has created the foundation in memory of her husband’s heroic acts as well as their shared compassion for children.

“Our Liberty Bell Award recognizes the individualism, courage, enterprise and altruism of leaders in a free society,” said YLD Chair Seth Mendelsohn of Harrisburg. “Lisa’s unflagging sense of hope despite adversity and her ability to promote acts of goodness and compassion have made her a national symbol of courage and strength. I urge all PBA members to join us in support of this remarkable woman and her extraordinary effort.”

America watched as Beamer stood composed and confident while receiving a standing ovation from Congress. Her introduction to the world by President George W. Bush was only the beginning of her unexpected thrust into the nation’s limelight. As the Beamers’story unfolded in the weeks following Sept. 11, the country soon learned that the hero of Flight 93 and his wife both shared an unwavering faith that gave them a solid foundation, even in the midst of tragedy.

As details about Flight 93’s victims were uncovered, Beamer discovered that many of the children left parentless on Sept. 11 would be without adequate resources for the future. She learned, too, that many insurance policies do not provide coverage when acts of terrorism are involved. Beamer’s own father died when she was 15. It was her firsthand insights on the struggles of growing up without a parent that led her to create The Todd M. Beamer Foundation, from which her children are exempt.

The Beamers were active members of the Princeton Alliance Church in Plainsboro, New Jersey, as youth sponsors and Sunday school teachers. The couple met regularly with a small care group for Bible study and prayers. Beamer continues to serve on the church’s governing board.

The Beamers met at Wheaton College in Wheaton, Illinois. They were married in 1994 and are the parents of three children: sons David, age 4, and Drew, age 2; and daughter Morgan Kay, born on Jan. 9, 2002. Beamer was born in 1969 in Albany, New York, and was raised in Shrub Oak, New York.

“The Liberty Bell Award recognizes an individual for promoting the ‘blessing of liberty’ guaranteed by the Constitution,” explained Mendelsohn. “Lisa Beamer and her family have made the supreme sacrifice in the name of liberty and justice, and we owe them a debt of national gratitude.”