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BAGRAM AIRFIELD, Afghanistan – U.S. Army Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the commander of NATO’s International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan, poses with U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Curtis M. Scaparrotti, the commander of Combined Joint Task Force-82, Dawn Liberi, the senior civilian representative for Regional Command East, and U.S. Army Command Sgt. Maj. Thomas R. Capel, the CJTF-82 command sergeant major, in front of a 9-foot segment of an I-beam that was once part of the World Trade Center. The unveiling of the beam was part of the Memorial Day ceremony May 31 at the RC-East command building at Bagram Airfield. (Photo by U.S. Army Sgt. Spencer J. Case, 304th Public Affairs Detachment)BAGRAM AIRFIELD, Afghanistan — More than 200 multinational troops at Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan, converged in front of the command building to see an I-beam segment from the World Trade Center unveiled during a Memorial Day ceremony May 31.

The event featured U.S. Army Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the commander of NATO’s International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan, as the keynote speaker and U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Curtis M. Scaparrotti, the commander of Combined Joint Task Force-82, as the introductory speaker.


“Today is about people,” said McChrystal, addressing an audience that represented all the task forces of Regional Command-East at the RC East command headquarters. “It’s about people who we have lost throughout the years, and, I think just as importantly, it is about people they have left behind.”
McChrystal emphasized the beam’s symbolism. Once it provided structure to a building so that life could be lived inside of it. Now, in front of the RC East headquarters, it would continue to provide structure in the mindset of troops. 

Following McChrystal’s speech, troops applauded as Scaparrotti and U.S. Army Command Sgt. Maj. Thomas R. Capel, the CJTF-82 command sergeant major, removed the tarp that covered the 9-foot, 950-pound beam segment. BAGRAM AIRFIELD,Afghanistan – Multinational troops bow their heads for the closing prayer during the Memorial Day ceremony at the Regional Command East command building at Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan,May 31. The ceremony focused around the unveiling of an I-beam, whichwas once a partof the WorldTrade Center, by U.S. Army Maj. Gen. CurtisM. Scaparrotti,the commander of Combined Joint Task Force-82, and Command Sgt. Maj.Thomas R. Capel,the command sergeant major ofCJTF-82. (Photo by U.S.Army Sgt. Spencer J. Case, 304th Public Affairs Detachment)

Residents of Breezy Point, N.Y., donated the beam through an organization called Sons and Daughters of America, Breezy Point. The city of New York had given a number of beams to the residents of Breezy Point after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks that killed nearly 30 residents from the small neighborhood in Queens.

After the community constructed a memorial from the beams, Sons and Daughters donated three beams to the U.S. military. One is at the recently opened Infantry Museum at Fort Benning, Ga., and the other is aboard the aircraft carrier, USS Nimitz..

The third beam arrived at Bagram Airfield in March, based largely on the efforts of recently redeployed U.S. Army Maj. Stephen J. Ryan, a governance planner for Combined Joint Task Force-82 who hails from Breezy Point.

As a tribute to its arrival March 31, U.S. Soldiers of the 612th Quarter Master Detachment sling-loaded the beam along with a U.S. flag from a CH-47 Chinook helicopter and flew around the installation with the beam and flag displayed,.

In accordance with the wishes of Sons and Daughters, the beam will remain on loan to successive units in RC East until the last American troops withdraw from Afghanistan. The beam will then be sent to Fort Bragg, N.C.

 BAGRAM AIRFIELD, Afghanistan – U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Curtis M. Scaparrotti (left), commander of the Combined Joint Task Force 82, and U.S. Army Command Sgt. Major Thomas R. Capel, CJTF-82 command sergeant major, unveil an I-beam from the New York World Trade Center, which was attacked Sept. 11, 2001. The unveiling was part of the Memorial Day ceremony at Bagram Airfield, May 31. The beam was donated by the Sons and Daughters of America of Breezy Point, N.Y., and will be displayed at Bagram Airfield until the U.S. mission is complete in Afghanistan. The beam will then be moved to the 82nd Airborne Division museum at Fort Bragg, N.C. Two other I-beams have been donated to the U.S. military and are on display in the Infantry Museum, Fort Benning, Ga., and on the USS Nimitz, a Navy aircraft carrier. (Photo by U.S. Army Spc. Jay Venturini, 304th Public Affairs Detachment)BAGRAM AIRFIELD, Afghanistan – U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Curtis M. Scaparrotti (left), commander of the Combined Joint Task Force 82, and Command Sgt. Major Thomas R. Capel, CJTF-82 command sergeant major, stand in front of an I-beam from the New York World Trade Center, which was attacked Sept. 11, 2001. The unveiling was part of the Memorial Day ceremony at Bagram Airfield, May 31. The beam was donated by the Sons and Daughters of America of Breezy Point, N.Y., and will be displayed at Bagram Airfield until the U.S. mission is complete in Afghanistan. The beam will then be moved to the 82nd Airborne Division museum at Fort Bragg, N.C. Two other I-beams have been donated to the U.S. military and are on display in the Infantry Museum, Fort Benning, Ga., and on the USS Nimitz, a Navy aircraft carrier. (Photo by U.S. Army Spc. Jay Venturini, 304th Public Affairs Detachment)

Last Updated on Monday, 31 May 2010 14:05
 

    

 


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