Three Sept. 11 Firefighters and Fire Truck Honored Wednesday at Ft. Knox

Sep 11, 2013

Al Wallace, Dennis Young, and Mark Skipper are in Ft. Knox Wednesday, being recognized for their heroism at the Pentagon. The firefighters were assigned to the Fort Myer Fire Department in Arlington, VA on Sept. 11, 2001.
Credit Lisa Autry

The Fort Knox Army post is observing the twelfth anniversary of 9-11 by honoring some of the firefighters who responded to the Pentagon on the morning of the attacks.

One of those being honored is Al Wallace, who says he thinks about 9-11 every day. 

Wallace was assigned to the Ft. Myer Fire Department in Arlington, Virginia, on Sept. 11, 2001. He remembers getting a call from his chief alerting him about what had already happened in New York City.

Within minutes, Wallace and his comrades found themselves on the front lines at the Pentagon.

"Right there, up against the building--it was very difficult,” Wallace told WKU Public Radio Wednesday. “It was difficult to breathe, and we were already hypoxic from running. The smoke was coming out of the building along with the heat and the fire. And the more we worked, the more we got hurt."

Wallace was reunited Wednesday with two of his former fire department colleagues, and the fire truck they drove to the Pentagon on 9-11.

The truck--known as Foam 161--was damaged by the fire and destined for demolition. But last year Ft. Knox acquired the truck for its permanent collection at the George Patton Museum and Center for Leadership.

Although it has been partially restored, the truck looks much like it did 12 years ago, including the soot still inside the cab.

Foam 161, one of the fire trucks responding to the Pentagon on 9/11. Ft. Knox acquired the truck and will include it in exhibits on leadership at the Patton Museum.
Credit Lisa Autry

Original post:

WKU Public Radio's Lisa Autry is in Ft. Knox Wednesday for the 9/11 ceremonies taking place at the military post.

A fire truck damaged during the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks at the Pentagon is going on permanent display at the Gen. George S. Patton Museum and Center of Leadership. Three firefighters aboard the truck that day will be in Ft. Knox to take part in Wednesday's ceremony.

We'll bring you Lisa's reports throughout the day during our local newscasts, and we'll have updates here as well as on our Facebook page and Twitter feed.

Patton Museum Curator Nathan Jones says the fire truck will be part of a display highlighting leadership issues that arose from the attacks.