Attorney General Bill Barr delivered these remarks at the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund Candlelight Vigil tonight:
It’s an honor for me to join with you here today — survivors and members of the law enforcement family. Thank you, former Attorney General Ashcroft, for that kind introduction and for your decades of work on behalf of police officers across this nation.
I feel a special bond with the Law Enforcement Officers Memorial. Twenty-eight years ago when I served as the 77th Attorney General of the United States I stood with President George H.W. Bush when we broke ground for the Memorial. In the intervening years, I was very proud to serve in a company that was one of the primary supporters of the Memorial. Tonight, as the 85th Attorney General, it is a real honor for me to join with you, the survivors and members of the law enforcement family.
Above all, I want to thank the thousands of officers and law enforcement families from across the nation who traveled to be here tonight.
In many cases, it was a long journey. But you made the journey out of love and respect for officers who have given the last full measure of devotion.
Last year, 158 law enforcement officers lost their lives in the line of duty.
Like you, they came from every corner of this nation, from every race and holding every creed.
But they were united in courage, in valor, and love of country.
Many of you knew them personally. To you they were husbands, wives, children, siblings, friends, and fellow officers. You have been called upon to bear a special burden.
Tonight we join together in a candlelight vigil to honor their courage and express our gratitude for their—and your—sacrifice.
These fallen officers loved you and were committed to the communities they served to the end.
Scripture tells us that love is stronger than death, and that there can be no greater love than to sacrifice oneself for the sake of others.
The men and women we remember tonight did exactly that. They laid down their lives for their communities.
By being here tonight, we help ensure that the names of these officers are known—just as they deserve—both in their communities and across this nation.
Joining together, we show our appreciation for their heroism and we recognize that our public safety, our freedom, and our prosperity are bought at a price.
We know that the American people are only safe because our law enforcement officers face danger. We can only rest easy because they never rest. And we can only dwell in peace because they stand between us and the danger.
Every officer can be assured: you have the unequivocal support of the Department of Justice. We have your back, and you have our thanks.
In a few minutes we will call the roll and we will have the honor of reading the names of those we lost in 2018. And we will light candles in their memory.
Like the candles—though they are shrouded in darkness—their light still shines, and the darkness shall not overcome it.
God bless our fallen, and God bless you all.