IN MEMORIAM: ROBERT B. PENNINGER -- (Senate - August 01, 2002); Mrs. BOXER.
Mr. President, I would like to take this opportunity to share with the Senate the memory of one of my constituents, Robert Penninger, who lost his life on September 11, 2001. Mr. Penninger was 63 years old when the plane he was on, American Airlines Flight 77, was hijacked by terrorists. As we all know, that plane crashed into the Pentagon, killing everyone on board.
Robert ``Bob'' Penninger grew up in Chicago, IL. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering at Purdue University and received a Masters Degree in Business Administration from Northeastern University.
After graduating from college, he married his wife Janet and they raised their daughter, Karen, in Massachusetts. At the time of his tragic death, Bob was working as an electrical engineer for the defense contractor BAE Systems in Rancho Bernardo, CA, and was returning home from a business trip on September 11.
Mr. Penninger lived life to the fullest and is greatly missed by all who knew him. His wife, Janet, recalls, ``Bob was always willing to help everyone he met. He was a great storyteller and he always had a smile on his face and a cheery hello for all.'' Mr. Penninger enjoyed motorcycle trips with his wife and friends. He also loved taking his 1999 Electric Green Cobra Mustang convertible to car shows, where he won many trophies.
Kit Young lived next door to Penninger for eight years and remarked, ``Bob brought a lot of joy to this neighborhood. He developed a special relationship with my 11-year-old grandson-he took my grandson to a car show in Los Angeles and they were planning another outing. A lot of people wouldn't care anything about an 11-year-old kid, but Bob did.''
None of us is untouched by the terror of September 11, and many Californians were part of each tragic moment of that tragic day. Some were trapped in the World Trade Center towers. Some were at work in the Pentagon. And the fates of some were sealed as they boarded planes bound for San Francisco or Los Angeles.
I offer today this tribute to one of the 51 Californians who perished on that awful morning. I want to assure the family of Robert Penninger, and the families of all the victims, that their fathers and mothers, sons and daughters, aunts, uncles, brothers and sisters will not be forgotten. Senator Barbara Boxer, CA.
Richard Sheridan, 77, passed away peacefully on Thursday July 24, 2014, surrounded by his family, following a brief illness.
He was born May 12, 1937. A native of Chicago, Rich was the son of the late Joseph and Dorothy Sheridan. He grew up within blocks of Lake Michigan on the south side. In his youth he spent summers with family in Saugatuck where he fostered his love of the water. He learned to swim and sail as a young boy, and these were things he continued to do all his life.
Rich went to high school at South Shore High School, where he swam and played varsity basketball. He earned a basketball scholarship to attend Northern Illinois University, where he graduated in 1959. While at Northern Illinois he met his beloved wife Sharon, who preceded him in death in December 2011. They were married for 50 years.
Rich enjoyed spending time with the families of his three sons, Pat (Kristin) of Los Altos, Calif., Dan (Karen) of Saugatuck and Tim (Julie) of Wilmette, Ill. He will be remembered always by his seven grandchildren, Katie, Stephanie, Nick, Gus, Lucy, Paige and Joe. His quick wit and dry sense of humor were always at the ready to bring a smile to their faces.
In addition to his sons, he is survived by his sister Nancy (Chuck) Zolper of Saugatuck. He was "Uncle Rich" to their children, Andrew (Kim) Zolper of Wheaton, Ill. and Amanda (Jason) Reiffen of Chicago, Ill. He was brother-in-law to Jackie (Fred) Yndestad and uncle to Kurt (Laurie) Yndestad and Kristen (Joe) Salerno.
Rich was a tireless worker. Starting in his teens, he worked summers in the International Brotherhood of Boilermakers. He continued to do this after college to earn enough to buy his family's first and only home in Western Springs, Ill.
Beginning in 1964, Rich spent 19 years with the United States Treasury Department as a special agent for the Secret Service. His knowledge of Chicago neighborhoods and urban street life served him well and he earned the respect of his colleagues and the younger agents that he mentored. He valued these relationships greatly, and their respect and friendship meant more to him than any official decorations.
He helped protect U.S. presidents and vice presidents of five administrations (Lyndon B. Johnson to Ronald Reagan), numerous presidential candidates and foreign dignitaries.
In 1983 he became a special agent for the Department of Labor, where he spent an additional 10 years. Once "retired," he returned to the Secret Service as an independent contractor helping with background checks. In retirement, he enjoyed visiting family and working on home projects, always finding a simple and elegant solution to seemingly complex problems.
Rich, Dad, Grandpa, we give great thanks for your life. You lived your life with strength, commitment, integrity, honesty, modesty, generosity, loyalty, and kindness that we will always remember.
An open house celebration in remembrance of Rich's life will be Thursday, Aug. 14, from 5 to 9 p.m. at the Katherine Legge Memorial Lodge, 5901 S. County Line Road, Hinsdale, Ill.
Internment will be private in Saugatuck. Donations in memory of Rich can be directed to the Lurie Children's Foundation of the Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago at www.luriechildrens.org or the Presbyterian Church of Western Springs at www.presbyws.org.
Message sent for the 50th Reunion Graduated U of I '59 .
Spent three years in the USMC. Married in '59. Four children 1961.1964(twins) 1965. Went to work for St. Regis paper Co. 1962 Retired 37 plus years later (Jan. 2000).I lost my beautiful wife in 1996. I remarried in 1999 and moved to the Phoenix area.
Thank you for the invitation, Marjie. Carl would have loved going to Navy Pier again. Unfortunately, Carl passed away in May from complications related to Parkinson's Disease. But he was able to stay at home during the years of his illness and he passed peacefully in his own bed. He had such a good time at the 50 year reunion and I'm so glad that we went. You were all great!