Fort Hood Shooting Victims to Receive Purple Hearts - kcentv.com - KCEN HD - Waco, Temple, and Killeen

Fort Hood Shooting Victims to Receive Purple Hearts

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WASHINGTON D.C. -- Senator John Cornyn issued the following statement on Thursday after the House Armed Services Committee unanimously approved the inclusion of his legislation to honor and support the victims of the 2009 Fort Hood shooting and make them eligible for benefits in the Defense Authorization bill:

“I applaud the Members of the committee for their leadership in approving this important piece of legislation for Fort Hood and the surrounding community,” said Sen. Cornyn. “The 2009 Fort Hood victims should be eligible for all the honors and benefits available to U.S. troops who fall victim to an international terrorist attack, especially Purple Heart medals, and this would make that a reality.”


WASHINGTON D.C. -- Victims and families of the 2009 Fort Hood shooting could soon receive Purple Hearts, benefits and closure thanks to language entered in the House’s National Defense Authorization Act late Wednesday night. During the House Armed Services Committee’s markup of the FY15 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), Congressman Michael Conaway offered the amendment on behalf of Congressman John Carter and Congressman Roger Williams. The Committee adopted the amendment unanimously by voice vote showing strong bipartisan support.“Last night was a tremendous victory for the victims and families of the 2009 Fort Hood terror attack,” said Congressman John Carter, Representative of Fort Hood. “By adopting this amendment we will provide the benefits, the recognition, and hopefully some closure to the victims and their families, all of whom have experienced unimaginable pain and hardship. This language will finally allow these soldiers to begin to move on with their lives, and I thank Congressman Mike Conaway, Congressman Mac Thornberry and the members of the House Armed Services Committee for their overwhelming support of this effort.”

The amendment Congressman Conaway offered would adjust the Purple Heart criteria so that our service members and civilians, who experience an attack inspired by international terrorism, receive the appropriate award and recognition. The amendment awards the Purple Heart to service members who are victims of an attack that was inspired or motivated by a U.S. State Department-designated foreign terrorist organization. The provision would be retroactively effective as of September 11, 2001.

“The service members who lost their lives on November 5th, 2009, were fighting a terrorist. As we know too well, the battlefield in the War on Terror is not limited to foreign lands. Men and women who defend America against terrorism on American soil, should be eligible to receive the Purple Heart and other medals that recognize their heroism,” said Congressman Conaway.

“Judge Carter has been relentless in working to make sure that the victims of the 2009 Fort Hood attack are given the appropriate honors and recognition. Just like those service members killed at the Pentagon on 9/11, they are victims of terrorism, and I am optimistic that this year they will be recognized as such,” said Rep. Mac Thornberry, Vice Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee.

“Nearly five years have passed since the horrible tragedy at Fort Hood took the lives of 13 innocent Americans,” said Congressman Williams. “It is beyond comprehension why the current Administration has labeled this gruesome terrorist attack “workplace violence,” leaving the victims and their families without the benefits, treatment and honor they earned and deserve. This provision in the NDAA would restore the full range of deserved benefits for the victims. Though justice cannot bring back those we lost, justice can be served for the killed and injured troops whose brave actions prevented further bloodshed. I want to thank Congressman Carter for his dedication to the Fort Hood community, and Congressman Mike Conaway and Congressman Mac Thornberry for leading this effort in the Armed Services Committee. We will not stop fighting for those who fight for us every day.”


This information was provided from a press release by Taylor Gilliam, Deputy Press Secretary, Washington D.C.


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