Car Dealers Pony $100,000 to Help DoD Families
By Diane Worthington
National Guard Bureau
WASHINGTON, Oct. 8, 2002 Two auto dealers groups recently donated $100,000 to the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society and Federal Employee Educational Assistance Fund to aid families of Sept. 11 victims.
Bob Mallen, Vince Sheehy and Geoff Pohanka presented $50,000 checks to the two groups on behalf of the Washington Area New Automobile Dealers Association and the National Automobile Dealers Association Charitable Foundation. The exchange came during a meeting of the Rotary Club of Washington, D.C.
George Warren accepted a check for the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society and Robin Kehoe, for the Federal Employee Educational Assistance Fund. The two said the money would provide postsecondary educational opportunities and other help to surviving spouses and children of personnel who died in the 2001 attack on the Pentagon and also Operation Enduring Freedom.
Army Maj. Gen. Sue Dueitt, assistant deputy chief of staff for Army personnel, spoke to ceremony attendants about Sept. 11 and "the long road ahead." Dueitt's office was where the plane hit the Pentagon.
"Our Army G-1 office within 24 hours of the attack had reconstituted headquarters in Alexandria (Va.), despite the loss of our three-star general, sergeant major and 22 other staff," she said. "Within 48 hours, we had full computer connectivity restored and were busy mobilizing reservists and assisting with deployments."
Dueitt shared with the group a few thoughts on the war on terror. "Today, we must be as swift and stealthy as we are strong, as flexible as we are ferocious," she said. She emphasized the importance of showing the world that, "There is a price for harboring terrorists."
She told the gathering that security and economy go hand in hand and that America must continue to fight to "create an environment in which global economies can flourish. Prosperity depends on predictability. Stability is a prerequisite for investment, innovation and other ingredients of a vibrant economy."
"We must become more agile and responsive to threats at home and abroad," Dueitt pointed out. "In Afghanistan, American Special Forces there conducted surveillance on one of the oldest military technologies around -- horseback -- called in targets by one of the newest -- satellite phones -- and watched the results carried out with one of the most powerful: bombers and air fighters."
"We can no longer reliably predict exactly who will threaten us, but we can predict how we might be threatened. Consequently, we need to plan based less on who we expect our enemies to be than on what capabilities we need to defend ourselves under any scenario," Dueitt said.
"The war has already required the ultimate sacrifice from American and coalition forces," she said. "Let the world note that we honor their courage by leaning forward, not pulling back."
(Diane Worthington is a public affairs specialist in the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs in the Pentagon.)