Four Credit unions two with branches in and around the Pentagon, two with offices at the World Trade Center escaped last weeks terrorist attacks without losing any employees but were still feeling aftershocks late in the week.
XCEL Federal Credit Union and FAA Eastern Region Federal Credit Union were trying to decide whether and when to rebuild the branches obliterated when the World Trade Center collapsed. Meanwhile, Navy Federal Credit Union, which maintains a branch a short walk from the Pentagon, closed some of its branches on military bases because of security concerns.
Pentagon Federal Credit Union of Alexandria, Va., was operating normally late last week. Its office inside the sprawling Defense Department headquarters sits in a section that was unharmed in the attack. The $4 billion-asset credit union reopened Wednesday, along with the rest of the Pentagon, said spokeswoman Mary Lynn Stevens.
Navy Federal of Merrifield, Va., with 2.1 million members and $14 billion of assets, is the largest credit union serving the military. None of its 92 branches were damaged, but in the hectic hours that followed the terrorist attack it closed 35 of them at the request of the individual base commanders, said Loren Moeller, a spokeswoman.
Ironically, the branch at the Naval Annex, just 300 yards from the Pentagon, was not among them.
The closed branches were to reopen by Friday afternoon, Ms Moeller said early in the day. Loan and any other requests related to the incident will be given the highest priority, she said. Our loan officers will be looking at [applications for] loans a little differently.
A number of Navy personnel had offices in the area of the Pentagon hit in the attack, but Navy Federal officials were still unsure Friday whether any of its members were among the victims. The credit union has established a memorial fund; anyone interested in contributing can send a check to Navy Federal Pentagon Disaster Relief Fund, P.O. Box 3000, Merrifield, Va., 22119-3000.
It was not business as usual, though, at XCEL Federal Credit Union and FAA Eastern Region Federal Credit Union. All the employees at their World Trade Center offices managed to escape before the buildings collapsed, according to a report published in The Credit Union Journal, a sister publication to American Banker.
XCEL, which is based in New York City and has $66.7 million of assets, announced extended hours at its branch in Jersey City, N.J. FAA Federal, with $141.5 million of assets, is based in Clark, N.Y.