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LYNCH BACK IN BOOTH, KEEPING THE FAITH

Dick Lynch, the Giants radio analyst whose son is still missing in the World Trade Center tragedy, says he will be at the WFAN microphone Sunday when the Giants play the Chiefs in Kansas City.

"The NFL made the right decision last week out of respect for all the victims," Lynch said Monday. "But now I feel strongly that I should go forward."

Lynch's son Richard, 31, was running a trading desk for Euro Brokers on the 84th floor of 2 World Trade Center last Tuesday when the second plane hit.

"As a family we still cling to hope," Lynch said.

Lynch bases that hope on his belief there still could be many air pockets, and water, that could increase the odds of survival.

The whole family has assembled at Lynch's Douglaston home. Four daughters (Nancy, Jennifer, Rosalie and Cynthia) and son John, who played football at Notre Dame, where his father was an All-American, arrived, along with seven grandchildren, from all over the country to console Lynch's wife Roslyn.

"They've been wonderful to her," Lynch said. "She's suffering terribly and all the kids being here to support us is helping."

The Lynches, a devoutly religious family, are receiving inner strength through their strong faith.

"We're praying for every one of the families with missing people, not only for our son," Lynch said.

Anderson fighting mad

DENVER -- As he watched the terror unfold on television, Mike Anderson the U.S. Marine replaced Mike Anderson the Denver Broncos running back.

Instincts honed from Day One of basic training came rushing back. Shock and disbelief were quickly displaced by thoughts of revenge and retaliation.

"Like the saying goes: 'Once a Marine, always a Marine,' " Anderson said Monday. "We were taught and trained to defend the country. Once something like that happened, the first thing you want to do is go out and defend the country. When I saw that happen, I got really upset about that. That's just something you don't do."

Anderson, who joined the U.S. Marine Corps out of high school and spent four years as a communications specialist, said he would not hesitate to join America's fight against terrorism.

His full-time job in the NFL precludes him from returning to the service, but his thoughts over the past week have seldom strayed from the people killed in the attacks and his comrades in arms who are preparing for war.

"I know I don't have to go, but I would want to go and be part of that," Anderson said. "I know my brothers in the Corps, they're ready to go right now, if they haven't already left."

Before his rapid rise to NFL offensive rookie of the year, Anderson spent time on assignments in Somalia, Kenya and Singapore.

Although he attended anti-terrorism classes while in the Marines, Anderson said none of the material prepared him for Tuesday's attack.

The coordinated assault has left Anderson with a somber outlook for the months ahead.

"I don't think it's going to be quite as swift justice like most people would like to see," he said. "I'm preparing for the long haul. It's sad to say that there's going to be a lot of lives lost on both sides. When you say the word 'war,' that's what that means."

Testaverde lifts workers

HEMPSTEAD -- Vinny Testaverde just couldn't stay away. So on Saturday, he visited what was the site of the World Trade Center, taking with him a piece of concrete from the fallen skyscrapers that his father helped build.

"I was there for about four hours," Testaverde said as the New York Jets returned to practice. "I just walked around the outside of where the rescuers were working. A group of guys were resting and I could see their morale was down and I wanted to tell them thanks for their efforts and help.

"It was amazing to see people come together from all over the country, not just from New York, to save lives. They motivate me. They are our heroes."

As he was leaving, the quarterback bent down and grabbed a piece of concrete, which now sits in his locker.

"It's a symbol to represent the commitment to what we do," said Testaverde, a native New Yorker.

"Maybe that commitment will spread to others and hopefully we can become a stronger nation. We should look toward standing tall. Those buildings were a symbol of what we are as Americans. They should give us a great feeling of what we are and serve as an inspiration."

Jets kicker John Hall is getting his inspiration from the Stars and Stripes. A small American flag hung above his locker and, Hall said, it will remain there "forever."

"That's something that has helped me a lot," Hall said as he looked at flag above him. "It speaks volumes. There is a lot of meaning behind it, a lot of blood and tears and sweat behind that flag. I feel proud to be an American and I want to play my part in helping people heal."

Testaverde said the team will visit Lower Manhattan today, a day off for the players.

The Jets players can't help but be affected when they visit Tuesday. They are shook up, just like everybody else. All that's going on made Kevin Mawae think about his father, who is retired.

"My dad served two tours in Vietnam," Mawae said. "He was in the Army for 23 years. It gives me a better appreciation for what he has done, for what he fought for. My dad fought for freedom and he fought for other people to be free and to have the same rights that we do."

The Jets travel to New England this weekend and plan to fly to that game even though it's about a four-hour drive to Foxboro.

"We have to catch an airplane eventually, so we'll do it this week," coach Herman Edwards said. "We can't bus all over the country; that's like high school football."

"You can't live in fear," added Wayne Chrebet, who also grew up in the New York area. "You want to take as many precautions as you can, but you have to go on."

Last Friday, when Testaverde was in church, he was approached by a man whose brother died at the World Trade Center.

"He asked me if I could get the team to autograph a football, because his brother was a big Jets fan and he wanted to leave something to his daughter in memory of him," Testaverde said, shuddering. "It's just chilling."

Around the league

Tommy Parks, a former minor-league baseball player and itinerant punter, was released by the New York Jets. With regular punter Tom Tupa apparently recovered from hip and groin injuries, the Jets waived the 32-year-old Parks. In his only NFL action, he averaged 47.6 yards on five punts against Indianapolis.

Dallas Cowboys defensive end Ebenezer Ekuban had surgery on a herniated disk Monday and will be sidelined about two months.

Dolphins receiver James McKnight left practice after tearing the skin between two fingers on his right hand. McKnight might need stitches, but he should play Sunday against the Raiders.

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