We are blessed in this country to have so many men and women who are willing to put themselves in harm’s way in order to keep us safe. This of course includes active and former members of the armed services who fight overseas to protect the principles and freedoms on our home soil. But, closer to home, in small towns and neighborhoods all over our state, there are police officers, firefighters and first responders who devote every day to public service and personal sacrifice.


Sometimes, our military veterans and community peace officers are one in the same. Many individuals, after serving in the military, return home and put on a different uniform—that of a police officer or first responder. Not only are these men and women trained and knowledgeable about how to keep themselves and those around them safe, but for many it is a continuation of their calling and desire to serve their fellow man.


Earlier this summer, I sponsored legislation with Rep. Terry Johnson of Scioto County to give these men and women some due recognition. House Bill 244 would designate the tenth day of November as “Armed Services, Peace Officer, First Responder, and Dual Service Recognition Day.” It will honor those individuals who have served in the armed forces and as a police officer or other first responder.


It was an honor for me to joint-sponsor this piece of legislation with Rep. Johnson, who I believe is a perfect example of a distinguished public servant. One of two doctors in the Ohio House, Rep. Johnson served multiple tours in Iraq and served as a senior flight surgeon and as the first State Aviation Medical Officer in the Ohio Army National Guard. As a state representative, he was instrumental in passing legislation to cut down on the prescription drug abuse that has ravaged our state over the past several years.


House Bill 244 is a very simple bill, but I believe it is important to give special recognition to those who give extra of themselves to better the world around them.

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