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Air Force Memorial completed

ARLINGTON, Va. -- The Air Force Memorial's stainless steel spires were finished Sept. 21.
Reaching a height of 270 feet and located on a promontory overlooking Arlington Cemetery, the memorial will transform the greater Washington, D.C., skyline and provide visitors with a commanding view of the nation's Capitol, according to retired Maj. Gen. Edward F. Grillo Jr., president of the Air Force Memorial Foundation. 

"The reality has lived up to the dream that we've had for almost 15 years since we embarked on this project to develop the memorial," said General Grillo. "As we remove the cranes and peel away the blue plastic covering to reveal the stainless steel in the next few weeks, the nation will finally be introduced to this lasting tribute to the men and women of the Air Force and its predecessor organizations." 

Designed by the late James Ingo Freed, an architect with Pei Cobb and Partners, the spires are evocative of the bomb-burst flying formation made famous by the Air Force Thunderbirds. 

The Air Force Memorial will officially be dedicated Oct. 14. 

"We are expecting over 30,000 people to join with us to celebrate the official dedication of the memorial," the general said. "As an Air Force veteran, I am incredibly excited about the planned events and wish to extend an invitation to all Americans to join us in Arlington, Va. Oct. 14."