AshLee Strong, Doug Andres
WASHINGTON—This afternoon, House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) took part in a Soldier’s Medal ceremony honoring Rep. Brad Wenstrup (R-OH) for his heroic actions on June 14, 2017 during the shooting at the Congressional Baseball Game practice in Alexandria, VA.
Following are Speaker Ryan’s remarks, as prepared for delivery:
“Secretary Esper, General Milley: Thank you for conducting this ceremony here in the Capitol. It means so much to help honor one of our own.
“Colonel Wenstrup: I know I speak for every single one of our colleagues, Republican and Democrat, when I say congratulations.
“No one is more deserving of this kind of recognition: not only for what you did on that day, but for what you do every day to answer the call to serve.
“You elevate all of us. You make all of us want to be better. Thank you.
“Steve is always a tough act to follow, especially these days.
“His presence here alone is proof of why this medal is being awarded.
“Every day, I thank God that our prayers were answered.
“I thank God for putting Brad Wenstrup on that field that morning.
“I didn’t really have the chance to talk to Brad until that night. We were on the House floor.
“And he walked me through everything.
“From the moment he decided it was safe to run out there. What the wound was like. How he treated it. What he used to treat it.
“You know how doctors are. They don’t skimp on the technical stuff.
“I was amazed by how he remembered all of it so clearly, so clinically.
“His code, his training, his years of experience had kicked in.
“But something more kicked in at that moment too.
“Brad, I know that one of your heroes is Dr. John Pryor. He was a trauma surgeon, who like many Americans, enlisted after 9/11.
“On that day, he drove straight to Manhattan, and made it to St. Vincent’s Hospital in Midtown. Dozens of other doctors were there too.
“But instead of waiting for instructions, Dr. Pryor headed outside, flagged down an ambulance, went to Ground Zero, and cared for anyone he could.
“Our heroes always say they were at the right place at the right time.
“But really, they just have the right stuff—the stuff that drives them to run into fire. The valor that goes beyond what words can describe.
“Colonel Wenstrup: We are humbled to share this moment with you.
“It shows that we should always do what we can to serve, and never wait to do what we can for others.
“Thank you for saving our friend’s life.