I keep reading and hearing that 80 nations (or “over 80 nations” or “some 80 nations”) lost victims to the WTC attacks, but I cannot confirm this anywhere. The London Times, in fact, has a graphic showing only 42 nations : http://www.thetimes.co.uk/picture/0,,2001320130,00.jpg
ABCnews.com has probably as complete a list of victims as anybody, but it gives their city of residence, not their nation of citizenship, as far as I can tell.
Has anyone found any source for the “80 nations” thing, or is it just an urban legend?
Maybe a couple of weeks ago I either read or heard about the 80 nations. I had to check the State Dept. site to see if there are that many nations. (true confessions) It looked possible with all the nations in Africa, for example. Also, the Marriott Hotel, below the twin towers, was also destroyed with many of its guests. Perhaps it was premature reporting. If I come across the info. again, will post.
Actually, I don’t think the Marriott (WTC 3) is the source of much of the difficulty - I believe Labradorian is correct in that it was evacuated well before the neighboring towers collapsed. Rather, there are so many countries involved because the towers were home to so many international businesses, and, IIRC, to a handful of consulates as well.
The numbers keep changing for at least two reasons:
Like anwyhere else in New York, a certain percentage of people working in the WTC were illegals. Some families have been reluctant to come forward because of INS fears - recently the city government has put out bulletins guaranteeing confidentiality, just to make sure they know of everyone.
Many foreign consulates sent lists of missing nationals that included the names of anyone whose family back home couldn’t reach them - whether they were known to be in/near the WTC or not. For example, tourists staying at hotels in the evacuation zone (which for a while was all of Manhattan below Chambers Street) might not have been reachable for several days, even though they were perfectly OK. It’s taken a lot of sleuthing to track those folks down and remove their names.
Just because of the sheer numbers and the fires (which are still hot embers one month later) I doubt that we’ll ever have a completely accurate list of every person lost. All we’ll know is that it’s too many.