Nine years ago today my younger sister Ann Campana Judge was murdered by the five men you see here.
She was on American Airlines Flight #77 - the one that was crashed into the Pentagon.
I will always remember that these men, as well as 10 of the other 14 murderers, were Saudi Arabians. The other four were nationals of the UAE (2), Lebanon, and Egypt.
When we buy Saudi oil, some of our money goes to organizations that support these kinds of people.
We should never forget that.
A few days after 9/11/2001, a field outside the Pentagon was 'appropriated' by loved ones of the victims. We left mementos of those we lost.
Below you can see what what my niece Becky and I left in Ann's memory. The Marlboro Lights and Diet Coke should have been accompanied by a fifth (or more) of Dewar's Scotch but we exercised some good judgment - we left a Dewar's ad from a magazine. Besides, Annn would have wanted us to consume it.
I've been to the memorial thrice and it is a remarkable place. It's open 24/7.
Below are some pictures, including Ann's bench and her name carved in stone at the entrance.
In August 2009 I had a nice long visit. I sat on her bench and said "God bless!" to the other 183 murdered heroes who are memorialized, including the three middle-school students and their teachers Ann and NGS colleague Joe Ferguson were escorting to Los Angeles to join others for a field trip to the Channel Islands. It was the students' first airplane trip.
Here are more pictures.
Next time I vist I'll bring some Diet Coke, a pack of Marlboro Lights, and maybe a bottle of Dewar's. Those were three of Annie's favorite things.
One thing gnaws at me: what were Ann's last moments like? Was she aware that they were going to crash? She must have - she was an experienced flyer who'd flown out of DC airports many times. She knew they were flying too fast and too low. And they were going in the wrong direction to be landing at DCA. Did she die on impact or suffer? Was she comforting the children? Probably.
Somewhat morbid, I know.
I have her effects in a box (Mary Frances had this custom-built for me) in our library - her driver's license, some business cards, etc. It's amazing how well they survived the conflagration. She was incinerated but her business cards survived.
On the tenth anniversary I am going to retrace her flight. I suspect flight number 77 has long since been retired byAA but I'll do IAD > LAX. Perhaps that will help me.
Here is an article about the foundation I created to honor Ann.
RIP, Annie. You're still doing good things.
"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." -- Edmund Burke
"A little bit of irreverence is good. A lot is better." -- Ann Campana Judge.