United States President Joe Biden, on Thursday, awarded four congressional gold medals to officers of the D.C. Metropolitan Police Department and US Capitol Police, who defended the US Capitol from a violent mob that consisted of supporters of former US President Donald Trump.
Biden signed a legislation, which passed the test of the United States House of Representatives and the Senate, to award the gold medals.
Even though the Senate passed the bill with no opposition, a minor pushback was faced in the House, where 21 members of the Republican party voted against it, according to reports from CBS News.
At the White House ceremony on Thursday, Biden said, “To all of them, on behalf of a grateful nation, thank you, thank you, thank you for protecting our Capitol. Maybe even more importantly, protecting our Constitution. And saving the lives of duly elected members of the Senate and the House and their staffs”, according to reports from CBS News.
Biden further spoke in appreciation and gratitude towards those who protected the US Capitol building on January 6 earlier this year. “You stood in the breach. You did your duty — duty to defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic”, he said honouring the officers.
Brian Sicknick and Billy Evans, the two fallen officers who were present at the Capitol on the day of the violence, were mentioned by name by Biden. “Both gave the full measure of their devotion to the country at the United States Capitol”, he said while nodding at the families of Evans and Sicknick, who were sitting in the audience.
Brian Sicknick died a day after the violence in Washington due to natural causes, according to reports from CBS News. On the other hand, officer Billy Evans was killed in early April when a man smashed his car into barricades maintained by law enforcement officials in Washington DC, severely injuring Evans and one more officer.