In a vote on Monday, the House of Representatives agreed to award the Congressional Gold Medal to the 13 service members who died in the Kabul airport attack. The bombing happened during the chaotic evacuation of US citizens and Afghan refugees.
The Bill To Award Congressional Gold Medal
“The American servicemembers went above and beyond the call of duty to protect citizens of the United States and our allies to ensure they are brought to safety in an extremely dangerous situation as the Taliban regained control over Afghanistan,” the bill to award the medals states.
“The American servicemembers exemplified extreme bravery and valor against armed enemy combatants,” it continued.
Introduced by Rep. Lisa McClain, Michigan, and co-sponsored by 323 lawmakers, the bill had a near-unanimous approval during the voice vote on Monday.
Since the House approved the bill, it will be sent to the Senate to be approved. Next, if agreed, the bill must be signed by the president as the last authorization before the medals are awarded.
On August 26, a suicide bomber detonated a bomb outside the Abbey Gate of Kabul International Airport. A branch of ISIS, known as ISIS-K, claimed responsibility for the bombing.
The attack happened while masses of Afghans desperate to flee Taliban control crowded outside the airport as the US raced to evacuate as many people as possible before the deadline. President Joe Biden ordered the withdrawal from Afghanistan to be done by August 31.
An estimated 170 Afghan civilians died in addition to the 13 service members.
Honoring Those Who Died In The Line Of Duty
Navy Corpsman Maxton Soviak, 22
Army Staff Sgt. Ryan Knauss, 23
Marines Lance Cpl. Kareem Nikoui, 20
Lance Cpl. David Espinoza, 20
Lance Cpl. Rylee McCollum, 20
Lance Cpl. Jared Schmitz, 20
Cpl. Hunter Lopez, 22
Staff Sgt. Taylor Hoover, 31
Cpl. Daegan William-Tyeler Page, 23
Sgt. Nicole Gee, 23
Cpl. Humberto Sanchez, 22
Lance Cpl. Dylan Merola, 20
Sgt. Johanny Rosario Pichardo, 25
“These 13 fallen warriors, along with many others, made the ultimate sacrifice. Each of them knew their duty, and they accepted the risks,” McClain said on the House floor on Monday.
“They knew the mission and valiantly forged ahead, helping hundreds to safety, overcoming their own fears when a suicide bomb attacked them and took their own lives.”
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