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9-11 video set to music still teaching tool

The Tualatin High choir performed the music in Carnegie Hall just five months before Sept. 11

If ever I soothed thy sadness, think on me. When foes are by thee, when woes are nigh thee, when friends all fly thee, think on me.

When thou hast none to cheer thee, think on me. When no fond heart is near thee, think on me. When lonely sighing, over pleasure flying, when hope is dying, think on me

The words of 16th Century Mary Queen of Scots echoed through the ears of Tualatin High students as they sat during their lunch hours five years ago still stunned by the events of Sept. 11.

Five years later those same words are absorbed by freshman students at Tualatin High as they are introduced to the concept of conveying feelings through music.

The harmonious voices of the school's choir had filled the somber atmosphere as students, teachers and administrators huddled around, remembered Kim Kroeger, director of Tualatin High's vocal music department.

'I remember when I woke up that morning and heard the news, it just took the wind right out of me,' she said.

Directing their emotions into their music, members of the high school's choral department including the school's elite choir, the Crimsonnaires, sang a medley of American songs during the school's lunch hours in the days following the tragedy. They also sang, 'Think on Me.'

'The words just seemed to fit,' Kroeger said, remembering how the song captured the somber feelings of the audience.

Just five months before Sept. 11, 2001, the Tualatin choral department had taken a trip to New York City and sang in the famous Carnegie Hall.

A recording of the choir's performance of 'Think on Me' continues to stir emotion.

Former school board member Patty Thomas created a video using images from 9-11 and the 'Think on Me' recording from the Tualatin chorus.

'I share that tape with each freshman class that comes in,' Kroeger said.

'The lyrics and the song express emotions.'

Kroeger has not showed the tape outside her classroom for a while, she said. But she knows it's important for people to remember the events of Sept. 11 and to remember the emotions.

'(The students) are somber and attentive every time I play it,' she said. 'It's just a very, very quiet time.'