ARLINGTON, Va. -- The Arlington County Board today approved $50,000 to support the creation of a September 11, 2001 Tribute Room on board the soon-to-be-commissioned USS Arlington.
“This is a big week for the USS Arlington and for our community,” said Arlington County Board Chairman J. Walter Tejada. “It is fitting that the Board has approved funding for the ship’s Tribute Room just days before the USS Arlington sails into Norfolk, where it will be welcomed by some of the same first responders who performed so heroically on 9/11.”
The vote was unanimous. You can read more information in the staff report on the County website; click on Item No. 27.
The Tribute Room, conceived by the ship’s commanding officer, Commander Darren Nelson, will “recognize and honor those who lost their lives at the Pentagon on 9/11 and to honor the heroic efforts of the first responders and emergency services who came to the rescue.” The room, which will be located just off the ship’s bridge, will serve as an educational and contemplative area for all service members aboard the USS Arlington and its visitors.
Navy regulations do not allow for federal funds to be used for this purpose, and therefore the funds for the Tribute Room must be raised from other sources. The County’s contribution, a gift to the ship and the crew, will provide 20 percent of the total cost of the project. Donations will continue to be accepted for this purpose, and contributions may be made at www.ussarlingtonlpd24.org.
On Friday, March 22, the USS Arlington is set to arrive in Norfolk, the site of the ship’s commissioning as well as its future homeport. Arlington County Police, Fire and Sheriff’s Office first responders will stage at the Pier to welcome the ship. All other police, fire and rescue departments in the region who responded to the Pentagon on 9/11 have been invited to send a representative.
The Commissioning Ceremony for the USS Arlington is scheduled for 12:30 p.m. Saturday, April 6, 2013 at Naval Station Norfolk, Pier 14.
For more information, visit the official USS Arlington Commissioning website.