WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) and Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) today introduced legislation honoring those who have made the ultimate sacrifice while serving our nation in the Army’s First Infantry Division. This bill authorizes these fallen soldiers’ names to be added to the First Division Monument located on White House grounds in Washington, D.C. The First Infantry Division was established in 1917 and has been on continuous active duty for more than 100 years. U.S. Representative Roger Marshall (KS-01) today introduced companion legislation in the House of Representatives.
“For over 100 years, soldiers of the Big Red One have been tasked with the mission and carried the burden that comes with making certain our great nation remains free,” said Sen. Moran. “I am pleased to introduce this legislation with Sen. Roberts and Rep. Marshall that will formally recognize and honor all fallen Big Red One soldiers at the monument that memorializes their sacrifice. As President Calvin Coolidge stated during his speech at the memorial’s dedication ceremony in 1924, ‘We raise monuments to testify to the honor in which we hold men for the work they have done, and to be a constant reminder to ourselves and future generations of the lessons their actions have taught us.’ There is no group more worthy of being honored than those who have made the ultimate sacrifice in defense of our nation, and I am proud to represent Fort Riley and work with the Society of the First Division on this effort.”
“The Fighting First are the true guardians of America’s freedoms,” said Sen. Roberts. “We must honor and remember the brave men and women of the Big Red One who in placing duty first, have paid the ultimate sacrifice.”
“It is my great honor to introduce legislation with Sen. Moran and Sen. Roberts that will remember the more than 13,000 soldiers of the First Infantry Division that made the ultimate sacrifice while fighting for our country,” said Rep. Marshall. “Freedom isn’t free, and this legislation is a great reminder of that. I am both humbled and proud to recognize these service members on this historic monument at the White House.”
The First Division Monument was developed by the Society of the First Division to honor the heroic efforts of those who fought in World War I. Additions have since been made to commemorate soldiers from the First Infantry Division who lost their lives in World War II, the Vietnam War and Desert Storm. Future additions will honor members of the First Infantry Division killed in Operation Iraqi Freedom and New Dawn, Operation Enduring Freedom and future U.S. operations.