On April 12, 2013 Board of Directors members Andrew Ammerman and Kathryn Horlick led a group of ISH residents on an in-depth visit to the Pentagon. Mr. Ammerman explained the design and function of the Pentagon, which was originally intended as a storage facility for the heavy boxes of documents to be generated by the Department of Defense before and during World War II. This accounts in part for the sturdy design that helped the building withstand the attack of September 11, 2001. Board member Lilibet Hagel joined the group, which was graciously received by the Honorable Chuck Hagel, Secretary of Defense, in his office for photographs, a look at some of the portraits of military leaders that lined the walls, and an insight into the responsibilities weighing on the man entrusted with the defense of the United States.
Afterwards the group attended the ceremony following the award of the United States’ highest military honor, the Medal of Honor, to Chaplain Emil J. Kapaun, a priest who encountered enemy fire in the Korean War in order to provide comfort to soldiers on the battlefield, recover the wounded, and bring food and support for them in their captivity.
This fascinating day ended with a tour of the memorial to those who died in the terrorist attack on the Pentagon of Sept. 11, 2001. James Laychak, President of the Pentagon Memorial Fund, conducted a tour of the indoor and outdoor memorial sites, explaining the artist’s concept of benches to memorialize each person who died in the attack.