Tuesday, April 18, 2006

For Immediate Release:
Contact: Elizabeth Karasmeighan
18 April 2006

Reagan Continues to Defend America
Reagan Missile Defense Site dedication draws hundreds to commemorate late president

Washington, D.C.- On Monday, April 10th, military personnel and state officials gathered at Vandenberg Air Force Base to commemorate the renaming of its missile defense facilities. The facilities, officially dedicated as “The Ronald W. Reagan Missile Defense Site,” consist of four silos, two of which are currently active in case of enemy attack. The Ronald Reagan Legacy Project, a national group devoted to memorializing the late president, applauds this fitting tribute to the 40th president.

Several hundred were in attendance at the ceremony, including several dignitaries such as former California governor Pete Wilson, Deputy Secretary of Defense Gordon England and former First Lady Nancy Reagan. The event, held in the 76th Flight Test Squadron Hangar, included the unveiling of a large bronze bust of President Reagan. Secretary England, Wilson and Senator Ted Stevens spoke of Reagan’s effectiveness in defending the United States from its enemies throughout the Cold War.

President Reagan is credited with successfully launching the development of missile defense technologies in the 1980s, calling upon scientists to develop a method to intercept and destroy enemy missiles before they could reach American soil. This played a great role in defense development during the Cold War, allowing American citizens to feel safe within their own borders from the threat of long-range missile attacks. Reagan’s defense system has become especially important in recent years as the development of mass weaponry is occurring rapidly overseas.

“This tribute to Ronald Reagan is fitting as he was a leader in the fight to protect American values, at home and abroad. He had the foresight to prepare our country for the future,” said Grover Norquist, chairman of the Ronald Reagan Legacy Project. “President Reagan was an unabashed leader and true patriot- this dedication will allow future generations to remember his constancy and ability to protect the American people in every sense of the word.”

The state of California currently has 22 dedications in honor of the late president including several community centers, a health center and two public schools. Reagan served two terms as governor of California from 1967-1975 and attained national prominence through his leadership of the state.

Monday’s dedication ceremony closed with the words of a speech given by Reagan in March, 1983: “Wouldn’t it be better to save lives than avenge them? Are we not capable of demonstrating our peaceful intentions by applying all of our abilities and our ingenuity to achieving a truly lasting stability? I think we are indeed.”

The RRLP is committed to preserving the legacy of one of America’s greatest presidents throughout the nation and abroad. Grover Norquist, chairman of the RLLP, is available for interviews regarding Ronald Reagan’s legacy and the group’s projects. Please contact John Kartch at (202)-785-0266 or jkartch@atr.org. ###