WASHINGTON — Two Lenexa firefighters were among those honored Wednesday at the White House.
President Donald Trump honored 14 public safety officers for their acts of heroism with the Medal of Valor on Wednesday at the White House, with honorees including an Ohio State University officer who thwarted an act of terrorism and a fallen Dallas officer killed during a mass shooting at a police protest march.
“To the heroes we honor today this afternoon, we express the gratitude and pride of our nation for your immortal acts of courage,” Trump said during a presentation ceremony in the East Room.
The award is the highest national honor given to US public safety officers, such as law enforcement and firefighters, “for extraordinary valor above and beyond the call of duty,” according to legislation that instituted the award. The distinction is similar to the Presidential Medal of Honor, which applies to military personnel.
Trump first honored Oregon State Police Senior Trooper Nic Cederberg, who sustained 12 gunshot wounds on Christmas night in 2016 while attempting to catch a fleeing suspect.
“He looks awfully good — 12 bullets,” Trump said after shaking Cederberg’s hand.
Ohio State University Law Enforcement Officer Alan Horujko, who shot and killed a man who had struck several pedestrians with his car before emerging and stabbing others, was also honored.
A group of eight officers from California were also given medals for their response to a mass shooting incident on Election Day in 2016.
Two officers killed in the line of duty were also given the award, including Dallas Area Rapid Transit Police Department Officer Brent Thompson, who died while engaging a mass shooter during a protest march.
This is not the first time Trump has presented the award.
In 2017, Trump awarded the Medal of Valor to the first responders involved in the congressional baseball shooting in Virginia.
And in 2018, Trump awarded 12 Americans with the Medal of Valor, including six heroes who responded to the 2015 San Bernardino, California, shooting.
Here’s a full list of the 2019 recipients:
- Fire Captain Dustin Moore and Firefighter Paramedic Andrew Freisner of Kansas
- Fallen Sgt. Verdell Smith Sr. of Tennessee
- Fallen Officer Brent Thompson of Texas
- Ret. Lt. Xavier Torres, Sgt. Seth Chapman, Ret. Sgt. Terry Smith Jr., Sgt. Thomas Avila III, Sgt. Rocky Wenrick, Cpl. Andrew Rodriguez Sr., Senior Officer Carlos Plascencia, and Detective Manuel Campos of California
- University Law Enforcement Officer Alan Horujko of Ohio
- Senior Trooper Nicholas Cederberg of Oregon