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Redskins Donate $700,000 To Pentagon 9-11 Relief

By Gerry J. Gilmore
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Sept. 10, 2002 – Army Emergency Relief and the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society today each received $350,000 checks from the Washington Redskins football team at an outdoor Pentagon ceremony.

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Tanya Snyder, wife of Redskins owner Daniel M. Snyder, presents checks for $700,000 to DoD Comptroller Dov Zakheim (far left), Army Emergency Relief Director Nathaniel R. Thompson Jr., and Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society Vice President George F. Warren during a Sept. 10, 2002, ceremony at the Pentagon. Photo by Gerry J. Gilmore.

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Tanya Snyder, wife of Redskins owner Daniel M. Snyder, represented her husband at the River Entrance ceremony. She presented the checks to DoD Comptroller Dov Zakheim, AER Director Nathaniel R. Thompson Jr., and NMCRS Vice President George F. Warren.

Ownership, coaches, players, families and fans contributed to the Redskins' Relief Fund, Snyder said. The fund, she added, was established Sept. 12, 2001, to help the victims of the Sept. 11 attack on the Pentagon.

Zakheim thanked and praised the Redskins for their generosity, noting that the money would be primarily used for scholarships for surviving children of Pentagon terror attack victims. Snyder also presented Zakheim with a team jersey, emblazoned with cornerback Champ Bailey's number, 24.

Dan Snyder donated $250,000 last September "immediately, on-the-spot, when he'd heard what happened" at the Pentagon, Zakheim said. Redskins players had previously visited the Pentagon soon after the attack to meet its military and civilian employees and to sign autographs, he noted.

It's important for Pentagon attack survivors to know "there are people who care about them, who worry about them, who are concerned about them," Zakheim said, adding it was his honor and pleasure to be the team's host.

The Redskins are "a team that everybody worships here," he said. "They've walked through the (Pentagon's) halls, they've shaken hands, they've signed autographs it is a tremendous bond between those who serve this country and those who represent its capital in such a phenomenal way.

"It's not an exaggeration to say that the Redskins mean an awful lot to the people who work" in the Pentagon," he added.

Redskins' Pro Bowl linebacker LaVar Arrington, quarterbacks Shane Matthews and Danny Wuerffel, and other players were on hand at the ceremony. Arrington pointed out that while football "is just a game, a sport," the 9-11 attacks and the war on global terrorism "is real life."

"Just to be able to be a part of this (ceremony) just means a whole lot to me," Arrington said. Despite the attacks, he said, America and its people "are still here. We've showed how resilient we are and how we can come together as a nation.

"We're stronger than ever," Arrington added.

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Click photo for screen-resolution imageDoD Comptroller Dov Zakheim displays his new Washington Redskins team jersey with cornerback Champ Bailey's number, 24, following a Sept. 10, 2002, ceremony at the Pentagon. The team presented $700,000 to Pentagon relief agencies to be used to help families and survivors of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attack. Photo by Gerry J. Gilmore.  
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