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President Trump participates in the Public Security Officer Medal of Honor Award Ceremony

President Trump participates in the Public Security Officer Medal of Honor Award Ceremony

[Music] good afternoon and thank you for all being here I want to thank the president for hosting today’s ceremony and for once again personally presenting the awards I’m told that the president Trump has now done this for three consecutive years which no other president has done and I think that speaks volumes for his personal commitment and the commitment of his administration to our law enforcement officers and our first responders the Medal of Valor Medal of Valor is the nation’s highest and most prestigious award for public safety officers of the more than two million who serve every day across the country only about it doesn’t receive this honor each year all first responders do noble work and all of them deserve our support and our appreciation but some have performed heroic acts of service that deserve to be singled out for recognition by the entire nation the men we honor this afternoon have come from every corner of this nation and from a wide variety of backgrounds but they all share the same spirit of love for their communities and a willingness to sacrifice of themselves they were nominated by their police chiefs and by their fire chiefs and then recommended by a review board of their peers several of the review board members are here today and I’d like to thank all of them for their participation in this process every middle of valor recipients were sipping has confronted life-threatening danger each has had their fight-or-flight moment and each one has stood their ground for our safety we hold them up today as an example for other first responders and to all Americans as we honor the recipients who are here today we especially remember two of this year’s recipients who gave their lives in the line of duty officer Verdell Smith of Memphis and officer Brent Thompson of Dallas they gave their lives so that others might live on behalf of the Department of Justice I’d like to offer my condolences and our gratitude to their families friends and fellow officers this afternoon I’m reminded of something that President John F Kennedy once said a nation reveals itself not only by the men it produces but by the men it honors and the men it remembers in these heroes we honor today the greatness of this nation shines forth and so to all of the recipients thank you for dedicating your lives to this noble work and may God bless you [Applause] thank you very much mr. Attorney General it’s great appreciate it I welcome everyone to the White House very special places we award our very bravest law enforcement officers and firefighters our nation’s highest public safety award the Medal of Valor congratulations straight away also joining us to the ceremony is Deputy Attorney General Jeff Rosen Jeff and congratulations along with a friend of mine great senator rob portman right thank you and representative and one of the best hockey players you’ll ever see peach Stauber Pete thank you very much to the heroes we honor today this afternoon we express the gratitude and pride of our nation for your immortal acts of courage to the families who join us you carry a great burden so that our citizens can live in safety and in peace we cherish and thank each and every one of you here with us today is trooper Nicholas Cedarburg from Oregon State Police where’s Nicholas good that’s what I thought on Christmas night of 2016 Nick was with his family when he got a call that a man in the nearby neighborhood of King City had shot and killed a woman and was now speeding through the city streets very dangerously nick raced to find him and soon located the murder and chased him into a dead-end road the suspect made a u-turn rammed right into Nick’s car and then immediately opened fire Nick thought he had it but he didn’t his Nick was shot of the hip very badly injured laid on the ground amid a barrage of gunfire he kept firing back preventing the shooter from escaping until other officers arrived that Christmas night Nick took 12 bullets after a very tough recovery Nick survived and trooper Cedarburg we are very honored to have you with us in the White House thank you very much [Music] he looks awfully good 12 bullets it looks good if you took no bullets you know some pretty good doctors I guess right yeah great job also with us today is officer Alan Hodgkin of the Ohio State University Police on November 28th 2016 an isis-inspired terrorist sped into a crowd of students in Ohio State I remember that he then got out of his car and chased them with a knife Allen ran to the scene and yelled at the man to drop his knife the man charged toward Allen after doing a lot of damage to others but Allen shot him and killed him immediately thanks to Allen swift action not a single innocent person that day died very badly injured people however officer Hruska we are forever grateful thank you very much [Music] this afternoon we also wanted to incredible firefighters captain Dustin Moore and firefighter Andrew Freese nur of the Lenexa Fire Department in Kansas in April of 2016 Dustin and Andrew responded to an apartment fire where they learned that a family was trapped on the second floor was looking very bad Dustin and Andrew climbed up a ladder to the balcony of the apartment and raced into a blinding hail of smoke and deadly heat they found a woman who was unconscious and two small children and carried them all to safety captain Moore and firefighter freezer you made a tremendous difference and you make all Americans proud that’s a great job thank you very much save those lives today we also recognize eight law enforcement officers from Azusa California Tommy Avila Manuel Campos Seth Chapman Carlos piss Lindsay I didn’t get that great Carlos but not bad where’s Carlos I owe you one Andrew Rodriguez Terry Smith Xavier Taurus and rocky when Rick thank you fellas it’s fantastic these officers responded to a call of a crazed man firing its citizens near a voting site on November 8th 2016 when they arrived Carlos and Xavier raced through a hail of bullets to save a woman who had been shot in the head at the same time Terry Andrew and Seth returned fire Tommi rocky and Manuel drew the gunman out of his house enabling their fellow officers to shoot him and to bring the rampage to an end very dangerous situation to each of you you represent the Unity devotion teamwork and swift action that makes America’s law enforcement the best and bravest anywhere in the world well done and I want to thank you all for being here thank you very much [Music] and earlier today in a private ceremony I was profoundly honored to present the Medal of Valor to the families of two fallen officers who made the supreme sacrifice in the line of duty sergeant Verdell Smith an officer Brent Thompson sergeant Smith was a member of the Memphis Police Department in June 2016 a gunman was speeding toward a busy intersection downtown as sergeant Smith cleared the street the attacker struck and fatally injured sergeant Smith I want to just thank Sergeant Smith’s family where are you we just left where are you sergeant Smith’s family thank you thank you very much thank you when July 7 2016 Dallas police officer Brent Thompson was on duty during a large protest against law enforcement that soon turned violent when a gunman opened fire on the police brent charged across the three lane road and fired on the shooter brent was killed instantly in the firefight but his active courage saved many lives many many lives an attack on our police is an attack upon our entire nation through their sacrifice sergeant Smith and officer Thompson defeated evil men with the goodness and bravery of true American heroes we are eternally grateful in their debt thank you very much it’s really great every officer firefighter and first responder who receives this award embodies the highest ideals of service and sacrifice character and courage love and loyalty your lives of patriotism your devotion to duty and your deeds of Valor lift up our entire nation today and every day we thank God that you were there when our communities needed you the most and we want to thank you all and God bless you god bless law enforcement and God bless the United States of America thank you very much [Music] so now I’d like to ask the military aide to come forward and read the citations as I present these incredible and very brave recipients with the Medal of Valor senior trooper Nicholas Cedarburg the Medal of Valor is presented the senior trooper Nicholas Cedarburg of the Oregon State Police for taking brave and decisive action to bring a murderer to justice on Christmas night 2016 after an extended vehicle chase senior trooper Cedarburg prevented the escape of the killer placing himself directly in the line of fire and sustaining several life-threatening gunshot wounds [Applause] [Applause] University law enforcement officer Alan Hruska of the Ohio State University Police Division the Medal of Valor is presented to university law enforcement officer Alan Hruska of the Ohio State University Police Division for single-handedly saving the lives of more than a dozen civilians on the Ohio State University campus by quickly and skillfully neutralizing a violent knife attacker who had plowed his vehicle into a crowd [Applause] fire captain Dustin Moore and firefighter paramedic Andrew freezer the Medal of Valor is presented to fire captain Dustin Moore and firefighter paramedic Andrew freezer of the Lenexa Kansas Fire Department for braving a furious fire and billowing smoke at great personal risk to rescue the occupants of a burning apartment building who are within minutes of perishing from the flames [Applause] [Music] [Applause] retired lieutenant Xavier Torres sergeant Seth Chapman retired sergeant Terry Smith junior sergeant Thomas Avila the third sergeant Rocky when Rick retired corporal Andrew Rodriguez senior senior officer Carlos placencia and detective men well Campos the Medal of Valor is presented to these men for acting with composure and bravery in the face of life-threatening danger during a mass shooting on Election Day 2016 these courageous officers arrived at the deadly and chaotic scene in Azusa California and immediately took command risking their lives to protect innocent civilians and successfully neutralizing the killer [Applause] these are tremendous people I want to just congratulate everybody it’s an amazing honor to have you in the White House say hello to your families and thank you all for being here thank you very much congratulations thank you everybody [Applause] [Music] you

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