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Prominent 9/11 survivor's account questioned

A harrowing account of surviving the World TradeCenter attacks by a woman who has led Ground Zero tours forpoliticians is now coming under scrutiny, according to a published report.

The account by Tania Head has appeared, among other places, onthe Web site of the World Trade Center Survivors Network, anonprofit organization for which she served as president and aspoint person for corporate donations, The New York Times reported Thursday.

Head has said, among other things, that she was badly burned onthe 78th floor of the trade center, and encountered a dying man who handed her his inscribed wedding ring, which she later returned tohis widow.

She also said her husband, or her fiance, had perished at the trade center.

She spoke to college students and led Tribute W.T.C. Visitor Center tours for visitors including Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg ,former Mayor Rudy Giuliani and former Gov. George E. Pataki.

The Times said Thursday that no part of Head's account has been verified.

It said family and friends of the fiance have never heard of Head, and that Merrill Lynch & Company, where she told people she had worked, had no record of her.

The Times said Head canceled three interviews in recent weeks, citing her privacy and emotional turmoil, and declined to provide details to corroborate her story.

During a telephone conversation on Tuesday, she would not explain her reticence, saying only that she had not filed any claims with the federal Victim Compensation Fund. "I have done nothing illegal," Head told the Times.

Head's lawyer, Stephanie Furgang Adwar, told The Times bye mail, "With regard to the veracity of my client's story, neithermy client, nor I, have any comment."

The board of the Survivors Network voted this week to remove Head as president and as a director.

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