ARLINGTON, VA - President Barack Obama joined hundreds of survivors and family members of victims of the 9/11 attack on the Pentagon in the Pentagon Memorial on Sunday to mark 15 years since.
"We remember and we will never forget the nearly three-thousand beautiful lives taken from us so cruelly. Including, 184 men, women, and children here," said Obama.
The President told those gathered that their steadfast love and faithfulness has been an inspiration to the country.
"It’s nice to have the recognition here at the Pentagon," said Devora Kirschner. She came with her parents to remember her husband, U.S. Navy Lieutenant Darin Pontell, who died in the Pentagon. They laid flowers on his bench in the memorial and on the benches of seven of his shipmates who also died that day. "This is just a hard day for a lot of people."
At the ceremony, a large American flag hung over the side of the Pentagon, marking the spot that American Airlines Flight 77 crashed into the building. Luticia Hook said her office was on the first floor beneath the flag. She had just left her office shortly before the plane hit.
"They said that the plane went 50 feet over my desk. But I was saved," said Hook. However, she suffered second- and third-degree burns and had part of her left hand amputated.
Hook is now friends with the mother of one of the youngest victims of the attack, Asia Cottom, 11, who was on the plane.
"15 years later, it’s still the same as it was one September 11, 2001. The memories of our daughter still resonates in our spirt, but the pain is still there," said Michelle Cottom.