Bill To Name Border Patrol Station After Fallen Agent
(CNSNews.com) – An Arizona Border Patrol station will be named for the agent Brian Terry, who was killed in December 2010 during a gunfight where two firearms that were part of a botched federal sting operation were found, if bipartisan legislation is approved.
Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) introduced legislation last week to rename the Border Patrol station in Bisbee, Ariz. in the memory of Terry. Issa worked with the office of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.) whose congressional district includes Bisbee.
Border Patrol agent Terry, a former U.S. Marine and police officer in Michigan, was shot and killed on Dec. 15, 2010 along the U.S.-Mexico border near Rio Rico, Ariz. during an armed confrontation with suspected criminals.Two guns at the murder scene were identified as part of Operation Fast and Furious, a sting operation carried out by the Department of Justice in which agencies knowingly allowed guns to flow into Mexico. The intent of the program was to trace the guns to Mexican drug trafficking organizations. However, the operation was halted after Terry’s murder and just 20 straw purchasers were indicted, while hundreds of the guns are unaccounted for.
Issa, the chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, has been leading a congressional investigation into botched gunrunning scandal. Also, the Justice Department’s Office of Inspector General in probing what happened.
“Our nation’s Border Patrol agents have a distinguished history of working to protect our borders,” Issa said. “Agent Terry, who served our nation through his military service and his career with the Border Patrol, gave his life defending this country. Naming the Bisbee station in his honor recognizes his sacrifice, service and heroism.”
A memorial video on Agent Terry was also released today online by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.
Terry’s family issued a statement in appreciation of the proposal.
“From the very start, Brian loved his job as a Border Patrol agent and loved his fellow agents,” the family statement says. “The new Naco Station named in Brian's honor will serve as a lasting memory for all those who knew Brian.”
The “Brian A. Terry Memorial Act,” has 52 Democratic and Republican cosponsors. If the bill passes, this station located on South Naco Highway in Bisbee, Ariz. would be just the second Border Patrol station to be named for an agent killed in the line of duty. The Border Patrol’s Murrieta, Calif., station is named in honor of Agents Theodore L. Newton, Jr. and George F. Azrak, two agents killed on duty in 1967, prompted by an earlier bill by Issa.
“In the past half-century, 70 U.S. Border Patrol agents – including Agent Terry – have been killed while protecting our nation,” said Pia Carusone, chief of staff for Giffords in a statement. “Congresswoman Giffords has led the fight for increased border security so Agent Terry and others will not have died in vain.”