September 11, 2008
President Bush Dedicates the Pentagon Memorial
To: NATIONAL EDITORS
Contact: Jerry Mullins of Pentagon Memorial Fund, +1-202-355- 6310WASHINGTON, Sept. 11 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The first of three planned national September 11, 2001 Memorials was dedicated today by President George W. Bush at the Pentagon this morning. The Pentagon Memorial, which honors the 184 lives lost in the attack on the Pentagon, was dedicated in a ceremony that featured remarks by President Bush, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and Pentagon Memorial Fund President James J. Laychak. At 9:37, the time of Flight 77's impact, there was a moment of silence followed by the reading of the names of those who lost their lives seven years ago steps away from where the airline crashed into the Pentagon.
"This Memorial stands as a testament to the spirit of the American people, a testament to their strength, their sacrifice and their commitment to never forget what happened here seven years ago," said President George W. Bush. "The Pentagon Memorial is open and I encourage all of my fellow Americans to see this park, walk its steps and read the names on the front of these benches as their loss and the loss their families still feel is real, and is a reminder of the value of freedom."
"Places like the Pentagon Memorial allow people to have a private, personal experience. As you walk among the benches with the flowing pools of water and the trees, visitors have a chance to connect with a place in their hearts they haven't felt in a while," said James J. Laychak, president of the Pentagon Memorial Fund who lost his brother David Laychak in the attack on the Pentagon. "I believe there is a connection between Heaven and Earth and finding that connection makes everything meaningful, including death, while missing that connection makes everything meaningless, including life. My hope is all of you will be able to feel that connection when you visit the Pentagon Memorial."
The Pentagon Memorial is being built on a 1.9 acre parcel of land adjacent to the Pentagon and within view of the impact zone where American Airlines Flight 77 crashed into the building during the attacks of September 11th, 2001. The Memorial will include 184 cantilevered benches that represent each victim who lost their life that day. The Pentagon Memorial will cost $22 million to construct as well as a $10 million lifetime endowment. The Pentagon Memorial opens to the public on September 11th, 2008 at 7:00 pm.
Among the major corporate donors who helped make the Pentagon memorial a reality are: Founding Sponsors: Accenture and Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal LLP; Titanium Sponsors: AT&T, Anheuser- Busch Foundation, The Ansary Foundation and Taiwan; Platinum Sponsors: The Boeing Company, McCormick Foundation and Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.; Gold Sponsors: American Forests and U.S. Forest Service, The Annenberg Foundation, Booz Allen Hamilton, Chrysler LLC, General Dynamics, General Electric Company, Health Net Federal Services, KBR, Larson Allen LLC, Lockheed Martin, The Magazine Group, The State of Maryland, National Geographic Society, Northrop Grumman Corporation, The Pfizer Foundation, Raytheon Company, The Honorable and Mrs. Donald Rumsfeld, Science Applications International Corporation, Simon Property Group and TriWest Healthcare Alliance.
About the Pentagon Memorial Fund:
The Pentagon Memorial Fund is a non-profit organization established by the families of the 184 victims of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in Washington, DC. The Memorial Fund's mission is to provide for the construction and permanent maintenance of the Pentagon Memorial, a beautiful park located at the grounds of the attack that will provide a place for reflection, remembrance and renewal. For more information about the Pentagon Memorial, please visit www.pentagonmemorial.org.
SOURCE Pentagon Memorial Fund
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