WASHINGTON (KHON2) — The Hawaii Congressional Delegation met with 200 Hawaii National Guard soldiers and airmen stationed in Washington D.C. on Thursday, Jan. 21, to express their gratitude to the members for their service in protecting the nation’s capital.
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Sens. Brian Schatz and Mazie Hirono, along with Reps. Ed Case and Kai Kahele, thanked the members for performing various missions following the violent insurrection on Wednesday, Jan. 6, and leading up to President Joe Biden’s inauguration on Wednesday, Jan. 20.
“I want to extend my deep appreciation to the brave men and women of the Hawaii National Guard for their commitment to keeping our nation’s capital safe this week. I’m thankful also for their families who support them, even when a servicemember receives a last-minute order. I wish my brothers and sisters in arms safe travels home and their families peace until their reunion.”Rep. Kai Kahele
“Mahalo to the men and women of Hawaii’s National Guard for always answering the call to serve our state and our country. We are grateful to these citizen soldiers and airmen for being in Washington to defend the American Experiment and ensure the peaceful transfer of power.”Sen. Brian Schatz
“Mahalo to the Hawaii National Guard, who came to Washington, D.C. to support the peaceful transition of power. Thanks to their service, our democracy was protected. I am grateful, and wish them safe travels home.”Sen. Mazie Hirono
“This was a difficult but critical mission for our Guard troops, and I join my colleagues and all of Hawaii in expressing our deep appreciation to our Hawaii National Guard for completing the mission with such commitment and professionalism. Because of them our country was able to honor our traditions and defend our democracy in a troubled moment in our history.”Rep. Ed Case
The deployment was the first time a large force of local troops has ever been called for a presidential inauguration.
Sen. Brian Schatz also announced on Thursday, Jan. 21, that President Biden authorized a full reimbursement to Hawaii and states across the country for the use of National Guard members to support COVID-19 response operations.
“This will save Hawai‘i millions of dollars and allow soldiers and airmen who are performing essential missions that will help us safely reopen our economy, including vaccine distribution and contact tracing, to continue their work without interruption.”Sen. Brian Schatz