WASHINGTON, DC - Congressman Steny H. Hoyer (MD-05) paid tribute on the House Floor today to two members of the U.S. Capitol Police force, Detective John Gibson and Officer Jacob Chestnut, who lost their lives in the line of duty 21 years ago today. Officer Chestnut was a resident of Maryland’s Fifth District. Below is a transcript of his remarks and a link to the video:
Click here to watch the full remarks.
“Mr. Speaker, this is a sad day in the history of the House. Some 21 years ago, a deranged individual came through the door that we now call the Memorial Door and took the lives of two of our officers.
“I rise to pay tribute to my constituent, Officer Jacob Chestnut, and Detective John Gibson from the state of Virginia. Both of them were shot and killed defending this Capitol 21 years ago today, July 24, 1998. A lone gunman burst through what we now call Memorial Door and attacked this sacred home of American democracy. These brave officers, who we remember today, placed themselves in the line of fire and gave their lives to protect Members, staff, and visitors in the building that morning.
“Memorial Door, Mr. Speaker, is right outside my office. I go through it almost every day. Every time I pass through it, I look at the memorial plaque and remember these two extraordinary and brave men whose sacrifice will not be forgotten by those who serve in and work in this House, by their brothers and sisters in the Capitol Police force who stand century and watch over it, and by their grateful fellow Americans.
“Today, Mr. Speaker, let us pay tribute to Officer Chestnut and Detective Gibson and give our thanks to all the men and women of the U.S. Capitol Police and, indeed, to all law enforcement officers, who every morning get up and put a badge, perhaps on their chest, or on their belt, or in their wallet and go out to protect us, their neighbors, their friends. Let us thank all law enforcement officers in communities across this country for their service, their dedication, and their sacrifices, which make the exercise of democracy possible.”