13 U.S. Troops Killed in Afghanistan Up for Congressional Gold Medals

by Quentin Blount
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It only seems fitting that the 13 U.S. Troops who were killed in Afghanistan during the evacuation effort are now up for Congressional Gold Medals. That process is now moving forward thanks to the efforts of a group of U.S. senators.

That’s right — the 13 fallen heroes who died during last month’s bombing at the Kabul international airport may soon be getting awarded with posthumous Congressional Gold Medals. As well they should — they lost their lives helping to protect both Americans and Afghans. The bombing will go down as the deadliest day involving American troops in the region in over a decade. And it took place just four days before the full U.S. military withdrawal.

All of that led to United States senators Elizabeth Warren and Steve Daines introducing a bipartisan bill to Congress on Wednesday. It is calling for medals for the 13 U.S. troops who passed away. And you’d have to imagine that every senator on the roster would be in favor of it.

“Thirteen brave men and women gave the last full measure to protect Americans and our Afghan allies at a critical moment in our nation’s history — they are American heroes,” Daines said in a statement.

So, if everything goes according to plan, those 13 medals would be awarded to U.S. Troops Maxton Soviak, David Espinoza, Kareem Nikoui, Rylee McCollum, Hunter Lopez, Jared Schmitz, Darin T. Hoover, Daegan William-Tyeler Page, Nicole Gee, Humberto Sanchez, Dylan Merola, Ryan Knauss, and Johanny Rosario Pichardo.

“As the U.S. concludes 20 years of combat in Afghanistan, I believe it’s fitting that Congress commemorates their sacrifice in this moment with the Congressional Gold Medal,” he continued. “On behalf of a grateful nation, thank you to these heroes and their families. And to all who wear the uniform and protect our freedom.”

Other Senators in Favor of Congressional Gold Medals for the 13 U.S. Troops

There were more than 30 other senators to introduce the bipartisan bill. Further, one of those was Elizabeth Warren.

“These individuals demonstrated incredible courage throughout their careers. And we owe it to them to pass legislation to recognize their heroic service with the Congressional Gold Medal,” Warren explained in a statement.

In addition to Warren and Daines, there were plenty of other names to support the bill. Some of those include senators Alex Padilla, Dianne Feinstein, Mitt Romney, Bernie Sanders, Rick Scott, and more. They all believe that the 13 fallen U.S. Troops should be getting awards.

“We have a solemn duty to honor the lives of the 13 servicemembers we lost during the terrorist attacks in Kabul on August 26,” Padilla also said in a statement. “These heroes served our country through the end of America’s longest war. And we have an obligation to them, their families, and their loved ones to ensure their ultimate sacrifice is properly recognized with a Congressional Gold Medal.”

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