Much of the assistance rendered by rescuers came from the improvised action of individuals or small groups. Men and women from within the devastated area provided the leadership, encouragement, and physical assistance that enabled hundreds of shaken and injured people to escape death. 1

When Flight 77 struck the Pentagon, nine Arlington County Fire Department (ACFD) medical and fire units were less than two miles north of the Pentagon in Arlington's Rosslyn area responding to an apartment building fire that had been extinguished by the time the first unit reached the scene. The Emergency Communications Center (ECC) diverts them to the new crisis. The first unit, Truck 105, arrives in the Pentagon's South Parking five minutes after the crash and pinpoints the heliport as the incident site.2

 

Soon after the airliner hit the building, Secretary Donald Rumsfeld left his office, went out a 1st Floor emergency exit, and hurried to the affected area. There he joined a stretcher party and helped carry injured persons to a medical treatment area. Once satisfied that enough help was on hand, the Secretary returned to the building, where during the course of the morning he spoke by telephone with the President and the Vice President.3

 

First responders carry the injured.



1 Goldberg, A. Papadopoulous, S., et al "Pentagon 9/11" Historical Office, Office of the Secretary of Defense n.d PDF. April 29, 2011 page 50 http://osdhistory.defense.gov/docs/Pentagon%209-11.pdf

2 Goldberg, A. Papadopoulous, S., et al "Pentagon 9/11" Historical Office, Office of the Secretary of Defense n.d PDF. March 16, 2011 page 79 http://osdhistory.defense.gov/docs/Pentagon%209-11.pdf

3 Goldberg, A. Papadopoulous, S., et al "Pentagon 9/11" Historical Office, Office of the Secretary of Defense n.d PDF. April 29, 2011 page 61 http://osdhistory.defense.gov/docs/Pentagon%209-11.pdf