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Mr. McCONNELL. Madam President, all across the country this week, Americans will honor the law enforcement officers who keep our towns and communities safe and pay solemn tribute to those who have lost their lives in the line of duty. National Police Week is a time to thank all those whose service preserves the rule of law, at great risk to themselves.
I wish to pay special tribute to one of those heroes today, Officer Bryan J. Durman. Officer Durman was a 27-year-old, decorated, Lexington, KY, police officer and a veteran of the U.S. Air Force. He was, tragically, the first Lexington police officer to die in the line of duty in over 20 years.
This past April 29, he was responding to a noise complaint when he was struck by a car and killed. He leaves behind his wife Brandy and their 4-year-old son Brayden.
Bryan Durman went to Paul Laurence Dunbar High School in Lexington, where he was on the wrestling team. After graduation in 2001, he enlisted with the Air Force. He rose to the rank of staff sergeant and served in both Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom. More important, it was while serving in the Air Force that Bryan met Brandy, his wife.
Bryan's mother, Margaret Durman, says that from the time her son was a small boy, she knew he would grow up to be a peacemaker. After leaving Air Force service in July 2007, Bryan returned to Lexington to keep the peace here at home and was accepted into the Lexington police academy.
In his 3 years of service with the Lexington metro police department, Bryan earned great respect from his colleagues and the community. ``The amount of support that we have received speaks volumes about the caliber of person Bryan was and his character,'' says his wife Brandy.
For administering lifesaving CPR to a vehicle collision victim and to a woman in medical emergency in two separate instances, Bryan received the Lifesaving Award and the Exceptional Service Award. His family will be presented with those awards as a small reminder that, as his mother puts it, Bryan ``died doing something that he loved.''
During this National Police Week, as we remember our peace officers and their families, we also remember the loved ones Officer Durman leaves behind: his wife, Brandy; his son, Brayden; his mother, Margaret Durman; his sisters, Monique Wanner, Michelle Wiesman, and Danielle Hood; his brothers, John A. Day and David P. Durman II; his brother-in-law, Robert Fletcher; and many other family members and friends.
Brandy will always have a fond memory of a recent Christmas when Bryan and Brayden received toy dart guns. Father and son spent much of the day playing with their new toys. ``I found about 50 darts in the Christmas tree,'' Brandy says. ``They were in the sink, in the bathtub.''
The day after Officer Durman's death, Lexington police officers wore black bands across their badges as a tribute to their fallen brother. The bands are also a stark reminder of the hazards of the job each and every peace officer in Kentucky and across the country faces every day.
The Senate has the deepest admiration and respect for police officers in every community in the Nation. We recognize theirs is both an honorable job and a dangerous one. We recognize they bravely risk their lives for ours. I appreciate all they do. And America is grateful.
Madam President, I yield the floor.
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