Thursday, October 13, 2005

White House Remembers Sailors Killed in USS Cole Attack

By Rudi WilliamsAmerican Forces Press Service
ARLINGTON, Va., Oct. 13, 2005 – The sailors who died on board the USS Cole in a terrorist attack were remembered Oct. 12 at Arlington National Cemetery on the fifth anniversary of the attack.

Retired Navy Cmdr. John Alexander, director of
communications and public affairs, Navy-Marine
Corps Relief Society, reads the roll call of remem-
brance - the names of the 17 sailors killed in the
Oct. 12, 2000, terrorist attack on the USS Cole.
Ben Barbin (center) strikes the triangle after each
name, as retired Navy Capt. William Perry strums
his guitar honoring the dead sailors.
Photo by Rudi Williams

The White House Commission on Remembrance hosted the ceremony at the site where three of the guided missile destroyer's crewmembers are buried.

As the Cole was refueling in the harbor of Aden, Yemen, a small craft approached the port side of the guided missile destroyer and exploded, blasting a 40-by-40-foot hole in the ship's side. The attack took the lives of 17 crewmembers and 39 others were injured. The repaired ship returned to duty a year later.

Carmella LaSpada, director of the White House Commission on Remembrance, read a message from President Bush.

"On the anniversary of this tragedy, we pay tribute to those who were lost and recognize their courage and determination to fight for freedom," the message read in part. "Each answered a noble call and demonstrated a love of country and a devotion to duty that have inspired countless Americans. Today, the vital work of spreading liberty continues, and our country will persevere until we see freedom's victory.

"We'll always remember those lost aboard the USS Cole, and we honor their bravery by continuing to defend liberty and lay the foundation of peace for our children and grandchildren," the president's message noted.

This year, the commission sponsored the remembrance ceremony with the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society.

Rest of the Story.

We should have kicked some al Qaeda ass right there and then. But, we had the wrong guy in the White House.

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