Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick, killed after riot, to lie in honor in Rotunda

The U.S Capitol is seen in the reflecting pool in Washington, D.C., Friday. Officer Brian D. Sicknick, who died on January 7 from injuries sustained in the U.S. Capitol insurrection the previous day will become the fifth person to lie in honor in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda. Photo by Ken Cedeno/UPI

Jan. 31 (UPI) — Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick, who died from injuries sustained in the Capitol riot on Jan. 6, will lie in honor in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda early next week.

Sicknick, 42, of New Brunswick, N.J., had served with the U.S. Capitol Police for over 12 years and previously served six years in the New Jersey Air National Guard.

He died Jan. 7 from injuries sustained the prior day as a mob of supporters of then-President Donald Trump stormed the Capitol and prolonged certification of U.S. election votes.

The riot also left four rioters dead.

Two other officers who responded to the scene — Jeffrey Smith, a D.C. Police officer, and Capitol Police officer Howard Liebengood — have since died by suicide.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., announced Friday that Sicknick, who sustained the fatal injuries “while protecting those trapped in the U.S. Capitol,” will lie in honor in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda.

A ceremonial arrival is set for 9:30 p.m. Tuesday on the East Front of the U.S. Capitol, with a viewing period to commence at 10 p.m. for fellow Capitol Police officers and to continue overnight.

A viewing period will be open to members of Congress from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. Wednesday, followed by a congressional tribute at 10:30 a.m. A ceremonial departure will take place at noon before Sicknick’s interment at Arlington National Cemetery.

“The U.S. Congress is united in grief, gratitude and solemn appreciation for the service and sacrifice of Officer Brian Sicknick,” Pelosi and Schumer said in a joint statement. “The heroism of Officer Sicknick and the Capitol Police force during the violent insurrection against our Capitol helped save lives, defend the temple of our democracy and ensure that the Congress was not diverted from our duty to the Constitution. His sacrifice reminds us every day of our obligation to our country and to the people we serve.”

Sicknick is survived by his parents, two brothers, a longtime girlfriend, two aunts, an uncle and a cousin.

A ceremony to pay tribute to him was held in South River, N.J., where he grew up, earlier this month, with family members, New Jersey State Police, borough officials, police officers and U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez, D-N.J., among the crowd.

“Officer Sicknick was a patriot and a hero,” Menendez said. “He gave his life as the Congress of the United States was performing its role under the Constitution, and while others may have walked away, he stood firm. We are in a debt of gratitude.”

Sicknick will be the fifth American to lie in honor in the Rotunda, but not the first Capitol police officer.

Capitol Police officers John Gibson, 42, and Jacob Chestnut, Jr., 58, died in the line of duty on July 24, 1998, when a gunman burst through a U.S. Capitol security checkpoint.

They became the first two Americans to lie in honor in the Rotunda and were subsequently buried at Arlington National Cemetery with full honors, according to the U.S. House of Representatives archives.

The gunmen in the fatal 1998 shooting was headed toward then-Majority Whip Tom DeLay‘s office. DeLay credited Gibson and Chestnut with saving his life.

Russell Weston, 41, a Montana resident with a history of mental illness, was charged with the killings.

Other individuals who have lain in honor in the Capitol Rotunda include civil rights leader Rosa Parks and the Rev. Billy Graham.


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