Oklahoma City – A Nation Remembers
This week, we remember the anniversary of a bombing that, just after rush hour on April 19, 1995, claimed 168 lives – including 11 Federal Highway Administration employees. The bomb of a domestic terrorist destroyed the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, Okla., causing a pain that America still feels. I urge you to join me in remembering our fallen colleagues and families of all the victims who have spent the last 22 years in grief. Let us never forget their loss, and let our actions honor their sacrifice.
On the footprint of the Murrah Building 168 chairs represent the lives taken on April 19, 1995. They stand in nine rows to represent each floor of the building, and each chair bears the name of someone killed on that floor.
In the days following the bombing, FHWA employees created an online Remembrance Page, which contains images of, and information about, employees who died that day. It is a continuing tribute to them that also honors the determination of those who survived and worked to reopen FHWA’s Oklahoma Division office soon after the bombing.
The outpouring of support from across the agency was substantial and led to a series of additional tributes. Weeks after the attack, FHWA employees planted 11 rosebud trees in Oklahoma City to honor our fallen colleagues, and those trees remain an enduring, living tribute. A plaque hangs in FHWA headquarters near the administrator’s office, and USDOT employees continue to support the victims’ families through the Federal Employee Education and Assistance DOT/FHWA/FMCSA-OKC Memorial and Scholarship Fund, which supported the college costs of children whose parents died in the bombing.
It was a terrible loss to the entire USDOT family and the American people. As we remember that tragic event, I encourage you to visit FHWA’s Remembrance Page at https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/oklahomacity/, and – wherever you are – observe a moment of silence to contemplate this moment in FHWA and Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration history on April 19 at 10:02 a.m. ET (9:02 a.m. CT, 8:02 a.m. MT, 7:02 a.m. PT, 4:02 a.m. HST).