Pentagon Memories

"...that day of peace will come. And until it does we ask a loving God to watch over our troops in battle. We ask Him to comfort the families who mourn. And we ask Him to bless our great land. And now it is my honor to dedicate the Pentagon Memorial."
-- President George Bush Sept 11, 2008
Seven years ago I would never have envisioned that I would be standing on the grounds of the Pentagon for the dedication of the memorial to the victims of 9-11 who died there. It was a solemn, powerful, and important occasion that I was honored and humbled to be a small part of. There were moments of pride, moments of sorrow, moments that goose bumps rose on my skin, and moments of renewed resolve to do what is necessary that this never happens again.

Here beneath these sloping fields of Arlington National Cemetery, fields that hold our nation’s fallen, this building stands as a silent monument to the resolve of a free people. And so too this memorial in its shadow will stand not only as a symbol of a nation’s grief, but as an eternal reminder of men and women of valor who saw flame and smoke, stepped forward to save and protect the lives of their fellow Americans on September 11th.

Let it also remind each of us of those who have volunteered to serve in our nation’s armed forces before and every day since. Our nation’s military has stood strong in this new age of peril, determined that what happened here seven years ago must not happen again.

--Secretary Donald Rumsfeld Sept 11 2008



I was deeply moved by the stories of some who were lost, including a young boy who was on a school field trip. I was moved by the incredible rendition of the Battle Hymn of the Republic (all verses) and by the closing singing of God bless America.

There was prayer and a wreath laying, numerous musical selections and powerful comments from former and current leaders including the President, Secretary Rumsfeld, and Secretary Gates. But the most moving moments were the reading of each name of one lost with their photo displayed large behind. The children hit me the hardest.

STORY AND VIDEO SYNOPSIS HERE

TAPS IS BLOWN DURING THE DEDICATION
AS THE ORIGINAL FIRE FIGHTERS WHO DRAPED THE FLAG RENDER HONOR

PRESIDENT BUSH'S COMMENTS

We also honor those who raised their hands and made the noble decision to defend our nation in a time of war.
When our enemies attacked the Pentagon, they pierced the rings of this building, but they could not break the resolve of the United States Armed Forces.
Since 9-11 our troops have taken the fight to the terrorist abroad so we do not have to face them here at home.
Thanks to the brave men and women and all those who work to keep us safe, there has not been another attack on our soil in
two thousand five hundred and fifty-seven days."
-- President Bush September 11, 2008
Dedication of the Pentagon Memorial


Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord;
He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored;
He hath loosed the fateful lightning of His terrible swift sword;
His truth is marching on.
Glory! Glory! Hallelujah! Glory! Glory! Hallelujah!
Glory! Glory! Hallelujah! His truth is marching on.

I have seen Him in the watch fires of a hundred circling camps
They have builded Him an altar in the evening dews and damps;
I can read His righteous sentence by the dim and flaring lamps;
His day is marching on.
Glory! Glory! Hallelujah! Glory! Glory! Hallelujah!
Glory! Glory! Hallelujah! His day is marching on.
I have read a fiery Gospel writ in burnished rows of steel;
“As ye deal with My contemners, so with you My grace shall deal”;
Let the Hero, born of woman, crush the serpent with His heel,
Since God is marching on.
Glory! Glory! Hallelujah! Glory! Glory! Hallelujah!
Glory! Glory! Hallelujah! Since God is marching on.

He has sounded forth the trumpet that shall never call retreat;
He is sifting out the hearts of men before His judgment seat;
Oh, be swift, my soul, to answer Him! be jubilant, my feet;
Our God is marching on.
Glory! Glory! Hallelujah! Glory! Glory! Hallelujah!
Glory! Glory! Hallelujah! Our God is marching on.



In the beauty of the lilies Christ was born across the sea,
With a glory in His bosom that transfigures you and me:
As He died to make men holy, let us live to make men free;
While God is marching on.
Glory! Glory! Hallelujah! Glory! Glory! Hallelujah!
Glory! Glory! Hallelujah! While God is marching on.

He is coming like the glory of the morning on the wave,
He is wisdom to the mighty, He is honor to the brave;
So the world shall be His footstool, and the soul of wrong His slave,
Our God is marching on.
Glory! Glory! Hallelujah! Glory! Glory! Hallelujah!
Glory! Glory! Hallelujah! Our God is marching on.