Scars are all that remain at Pentagon
A permanent memorial is planned.
ARLINGTON, Va. (AP) -- An observant traveler along Interstate 395 here might notice the gray limestone facade of the Pentagon is tinted slightly darker in spots.
These barely visible scars are reminders of the Sept. 11, 2001, attack on the nation's military nerve-center, which killed 125 in the building and 59 passengers and crew. The slabs obliterated by the attack have since been replaced with stone hewn from the same Indiana quarry where the original stone was mined. In other places, the original stone was tinted slightly darker by the smoke.
A small chapel built within the impact zone of the Pentagon now serves as a place of reflection for Department of Defense staff, but it is not readily accessible to the public. A permanent 2-acre memorial is planned, however. It would be built about 165 feet from the now-repaired face of the Pentagon's west fa & ccedil;ade.
Proponents of the project have said in the past that they would like to be able to dedicate it Sept. 11, 2006, but it still faces a long approval process.
The wall has been repaired, and the area remains visible from afar, but it is located inside a military installation.
Visitors are subject to security checks conducted by both military and uniformed Department of Defense commissioned security police.
But visitors can view the site from Army-Navy Drive, or from an old section of adjacent Arlington National Cemetery. It is most easily accessible via the Washington area's Metrorail system; the Pentagon or Pentagon City are the closest stops. Also at the cemetery you can visit a Pentagon-shaped memorial marker honoring 66 victims of the attack.
The dozens of civil servants killed Sept. 11 are also listed among the heroes honored at the National Law Enforcement Memorial in Washington, D.C., and the National Fallen Firefighters Memorial at the National Fire Academy in Emmitsburg, Md.
Also of interest, the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum's companion facility in Chantilly, Va., near Washington Dulles International Airport, has a small exhibit of artifacts devoted to Sept. 11, including photos and a fragment from the damaged area of the Pentagon.
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