Patriot Day at the Pentagon
I had the honor of attending the dedication of the Pentagon Memorial on the seventh anniversary of the September 11th attacks. The monument sits along the flight path of Flight 77, overlooking the section of the building where it crashed, claiming 184 lives, including 2 Idahoans-Naval Reserve Commander Ronald Vauk of Nampa and Brady Howell of Sugar City.
The memorial is composed of benches, each serving as an individual monument to every person who died that day, and surrounded by many trees that will grow tall to shelter those hallowed grounds.
As President Bush said during the dedication, "For future generations, this memorial will be a place of learning. The day will come when most Americans have no living memory of the events of September the 11th. When they visit this memorial, they will learn that the 21st century began with a great struggle between the forces of freedom and the forces of terror. They will learn that this generation of Americans met its duty - we did not tire, we did not falter, and we did not fail. They will learn that freedom prevailed because the desire for liberty lives in the heart of every man, woman, and child on Earth."
The Pentagon Memorial is the first to be completed at the location of one of the terror attacks, but similar efforts are underway in both New York and Pennsylvania. These projects will all serve as fitting tributes to the victims of that day for generations to come. I encourage all who come to Washington, D.C. to visit our newest memorial and remember our fellow Idahoans and Americans who were lost on that tragic day.
Innovation in Idaho
I look forward to the August State work period each year as an opportunity to return to the Gem State and meet with my fellow Idahoans. This year I met with businessmen and women from around the State and learned how they are adapting to a changing economy. From an ethanol processing plant in Caldwell to a lumber mill in Elk City, it was exciting to see the technology and innovation that is being used to modernize Idaho's key industries and keep them growing into the future.