President Donald Trump and the first lady are marking the 16th anniversary of the September 11 attacks on Monday by observing a moment of silence and attending a Pentagon ceremony with Vice President Mike Pence.
While the day's ceremonies appeared to be controversy free, with the president sticking to his script, it may be the first instance of him publicly speaking about 9/11 without raising eyebrows. Both men struck a tone of national unity as they praised the "citizen heroes" and victims who died at the hands of terrorists at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and in Shanksville, Pennsylvania.
"Maniacs disguised in false religious garb thought by hurting us they could scare us that day", Mattis said.
During his remarks, the President repeatedly acknowledged the enemy America still faces and vowed to pursue evil in every corner of the world.
"That September morning, each of those courageous Americans died as they had lived: as heroes doing their duty and protecting us and our country".
The president honored "each family", ensuring that "no force on earth can ever take away your memories, diminish your love or break your will to endure, and carry on and go forward".
The president added: "In that hour of darkness, we also came together with renewed goal".
He noted that as the United States was drawn into the war on terror, a fight he said "we had never asked for", the United States remains, as it was then, to see it through. Trump also previously boasted he'd predicted the attack in his book "The America We Deserve".
Woven into the American flag is the story of the nation's resolve, he said.
Meanwhile, Vice President Mike Pence today spoke at the 911 memorial in Shanksville, Pennsylvania. "And we have strengthened our commitment to the idea that the freedom of many should never be endangered by the hatred of a few", Dunford said. We do not waver. "For me, it's personal".
Brooke Singman is a Politics Reporter for Fox News.