James E. Risch

09/16/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 09/16/2021 12:36

Risch, Crapo, Colleagues Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Honor 13 American Heroes Killed in Afghanistan with Congressional Gold Medals

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Jim Risch (R-Idaho), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), senior member of the Senate Banking Committee, joined a bipartisan group of Senate colleagues to introduce a bill to award Congressional Gold Medals to the 13 American servicemembers killed during heinous terrorist attacks in Kabul, Afghanistan, on August 26, 2021.

'My prayers are with the families and loved ones of the thirteen members of our armed services who tragically lost their lives in the Kabul airport bombings,'saidRisch. 'It is only fitting that these brave men and women posthumously receive the Congressional Gold Medal for their courage and valor. May they rest in peace.'

'The thirteen servicemembers killed in Afghanistan made the ultimate sacrifice in service to our nation, and I continue to pray for their families and friends,'said Crapo. 'It is fitting to posthumously award these heroic women and men for their valiant efforts to evacuate innocent American civilians and Afghan allies from the country. They will never be forgotten.

The Senators are pushing for Sergent Johanny Rosario Pichardo, Sergeant. Nicole L. Gee, Staff Sergeant Darin T. Hoover, Corporal Hunter Lopez, Corporal Daegan W. Page, Corporal Humberto A. Sanchez, Lance Corporal David L. Espinoza, Lance Corporal Jared M. Schmitz, Lance Corporal Rylee J. McCollum, Lance Corporal Dylan R. Merola, Lance Corporal Kareem M. Nikoui, Navy Corpsman Maxton W. Soviak, and Staff Sergeant Ryan C. Knauss to receive the Congressional Gold Medal.

Additional co-sponsors of the bill include Senators Steve Daines (R-Montana), Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts), Marsha Blackburn (R-Tennessee), Richard Blumenthal (D-Connecticut), Rick Scott (R-Florida), Ed Markey (D-Massachusetts), Mitt Romney (R-Utah), Tim Kaine (D-Virginia), James Lankford (R-Oklahoma), Chris Van Hollen (D-Maryland), Shelley Moore Capito (R-West Virginia), Ben Cardin (D-Maryland), Kevin Cramer (R-North Dakota), Michael Bennet (D-Colorado), Tina Smith (D-Minnesota), Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Mississippi), Jacky Rosen (D-Nevada), Roger Marshall (R-Kansas), Dianne Feinstein (D-California), Todd Young (R-Indiana), Jeanne Shaheen (D-New Hampshire), Bill Hagerty (R-Tennessee), Maggie Hassan (D-New Hampshire), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), John Hoeven (R-North Dakota), Alex Padilla (D-California), Cynthia Lummis (R-Wyoming), and Mark Warner (D-Virginia).

Congresswoman Lisa McClain (R-MI) introduced a companion bill in the U.S. House of Representatives.

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