President Obama Vows to Help 9/11 Teen Meet Justin Bieber
By Julie Shapiro and Tom Liddy
GROUND ZERO — A New Jersey teen who lost her father on 9/11 got the rare privilege Thursday of meeting the President — but she really wants to meet Justin Bieber.
So a few months ago, Payton Wall, 14, of Rumson, wrote to President Barack Obama, asking the leader of the free world for help in meeting the teenage Canadian pop prince.
"Justin Bieber inspired me to share my story," said the beaming teen, who met the president at Ground Zero Thursday.
"I wrote a letter to the president a few months ago. I talked about how I lost my dad on 9/11 and how I like Justin Bieber."
After laying down a wreath of red, white and blue flowers near Survivor Tree at the Trade Center site, Obama warmly embraced Payton.
"I was practicing my handshake all day, but he gave me a hug," said the ecstatic teen.
"He told us he knows Justin," she said. Obama added that she could meet him some time soon.
Her younger sister, Avery, 12, and mom, Diane, were also at the ceremony and met Obama.
"He said it was an honor to meet us. He's really cool," said Avery.
Her father, Glen Wall, was a partner at Cantor Fitzgerald when a plane struck Tower 1 nearly 10 years ago.
He was 38 when he died.