In full transparency, the following is a media release from Sen. Ed Markey , who was elected by voters in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to serve the state in Washington DC in the US Senate. He is a Democrat.
WASHINGTON DC – Ahead of Memorial Day, Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.)announced the reintroduction of bipartisan legislation to posthumously award the Congressional Gold Medal to J. Christopher Stevens, Glen A. Doherty, Tyrone Woods and Sean Smith in recognition of their service to the nation.
Ambassador Stevens, Doherty, Woods and Smith were killed in the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya in September 2012. The bill successfully passed the Senate in the 116th Congress with 67 cosponsors. Congressman Stephen Lynch (D-Mass.) has introduced the House companion bill with 133 bipartisan cosponsors.
“I am proud to lead the Senate effort to honor the bravery of Glen Doherty, Tyrone Woods, Sean Smith and Ambassador Stevens, and commend their selfless sacrifice for our nation. We must continue to recognize these courageous Americans as the heroes they were,” said Senator Markey. “I was pleased by the Senate passage of this important bill last Congress and urge the Senate and the House of Representatives in the 117th Congress to prioritize its swift passage. These brave Americans, who died serving their nation, deserve the highest honor our Congress can bestow for valor.”
A copy of the legislation can be found HERE.
The legislation honors Ambassador Stevens, Doherty, Woods, and Smith for defending U.S. diplomats and the Consulate against an armed attack in Benghazi despite the risk to their lives.
Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens, a California native and a member of the Career Foreign Service was serving as United States Ambassador to Libya at the time of the attack.
Glen A. Doherty, a native of Winchester Massachusetts, served as a combat-decorated Navy SEAL.
Tyrone Woods, a native of Portland, Oregon was also a former combat-decorated Navy SEAL.
Sean Smith, a native of San Diego, previously served in the Air Force, where he was awarded the Air Force Commendation Medal for his service.
Co-sponsors in the Senate include Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Rob Portman (R-Ohio), Angus King (I-Maine), Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), John Hoeven (R-N.D.), Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), Bob Casey (D-Pa.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), Patty Murray (D-Wash.), Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), Mark Warner (D-Va.), Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), Rick Scott (R-Fla.), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.), John Thune (R-S.D.), Van Hollen (D-Md.), Sinema (D-Ariz.),Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), James Lankford (R-Okla.), Steve Daines (R-Mont.), Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), and Roger Marshall (R-Kan.).
“Senator Markey’s re-introduction in the U.S. Senate of legislation to honor the four brave Americans who lost their lives in the Benghazi terrorist attack with a Congressional Gold Medal is a tremendous honor for our family,” said the family of Glen A. Doherty. “We will remember these men always as patriots and true heroes who gave their lives for the safety and protection of other Americans. We thank Senator Markey and so many other leaders in the U.S. Senate who support this effort and are hopeful to see it enacted into law this year.”
“Sean was my only son – my only child. He along with Tyrone Woods, Glen Doherty and Amb. Christopher Stevens were killed in Benghazi Libya when the embassy was overrun,” said Pat Smith, the mother of Sean Smith. “These four heroes died while serving our nation. These four American heroes are very deserving of the highest honor our Congress can bestow, the Congressional Gold Medal. Our family is grateful for the leadership of Senator Markey and the support of his colleagues in this effort.”
“This is a special day because of the relentless efforts of Massachusetts Senator Ed Markey as he reintroduces a resolution in the Senate to posthumously award the Congressional Gold Medal to Amb. Stevens, Sean Smith, Glen Doherty, and my son, Tyrone Woods for their selfless sacrifices on September 11-12, 2012, in Benghazi, Libya,” said Cheryl Croft Bennett, the mother of Tyrone Woods. “It is a testament to the unflagging determination of the Senator Markey and his colleagues to honor these four courageous Americans for their outstanding legacies of loyalty to country. Special gratitude is owed to the many senators who continue to support the prior efforts to honor these men, including Oregon Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley for their steadfast commitment to my son. Together with the House bill H.R. 310, these four patriots, who embody the best of the American spirit, will hopefully receive the esteemed recognition they genuinely deserve. To each Senate co-sponsor, I offer my deepest gratitude for your work to ensure that the legacies of these beloved Americans, permanently cast and forever linked in US history, will never be forgotten.”
“Chris would not have wanted to be remembered as a victim,” said Jan Stevens, the father of Chris Stevens. “Chris knew, and accepted, that he was working under dangerous circumstances. He did so – just as so many of our diplomatic and development professionals do every day – because he believed the work was vitally important. He would have wanted the critical work he was doing to build bridges of mutual understanding and respect – the kind of work that made him literally thousands of friends and admirers across the broader Middle East – to continue.”