1600 Daily The White House • September 14, 2020 WATCH: President Trump awards Distinguished Flying Cross to 7 California National Guardsmen
The White House • September 14, 2020
WATCH: President Trump awards Distinguished Flying Cross to 7 California National Guardsmen
President Trump just honored seven members of California’s National Guard with the Distinguished Flying Cross, a military decoration that recognizes heroism and extraordinary achievement.
“Just over one week ago, these brave pilots and crew members of the California Army National Guard embarked on a harrowing mission,” the President said this afternoon from McClellan Park, California. On the night of September 5 and into the morning of September 6, the National Guardsmen flew two helicopters to Mammoth Pool campground, where families had become stranded and surrounded by fire.
Despite limited visibility amid the heavy smoke, these men completed their mission over the course of 10 harrowing hours—returning three times to the campground and saving the lives of 242 people.
“Our Nation is strong because of remarkable individuals like these service members,” President Trump said. “In the midst of our greatest trials and biggest challenges, America prevails because of the brave and selfless patriots who risk everything.”
President Trump traveled to California today to meet with state officials and receive a briefing on the devastating wildfires. He approved a Major Disaster Declaration for the state in August, and his Administration continues to provide support for state and local officials via numerous Fire Management Assistance Grants and other forms of aid.
“We wantto thank these incredible people—the first responders, service members”—who save lives while racing into “extreme peril,” President Trump said.
First Lady holds roundtable on Sickle Cell Disease
First Lady Melania Trump led a roundtable discussion on Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) at the White House today. The disease affects about 100,000 Americans in total and occurs in roughly 1 out of every 365 African-American births.
“We are surrounded today by doctors, researchers, advocates, parents, and patients–all united by our belief that a better and healthier future for our children is within our reach,” the First Lady said.
For the first time since the Reagan Administration in 1983, an American President delivered SCD messages to the Nation when President Trump did so in 2018 and 2019.
In fact, the Trump Administration has done more than any administration in history for people living with the disease, including signing the Sickle Cell Disease and Other Heritable Blood Disorders Research, Surveillance, Prevention, and Treatment Act of 2018.
“At the direction of the President, we have made huge changes to empower minority communities in many different ways like by improving infrastructure, creating better economic and workforce opportunities, and addressing health disparities in America,” said Ja’Ron Smith, Deputy Assistant to the President for Domestic Policy.
One participant in today’s event, 12-year-old Samuel Price, described having SCD as like feeling the scratch of nails on a blackboard—except feeling it “on the inside of you.”
Under President Trump, the National Institutes of Health has launched the “Cure Sickle Cell Initiative” to accelerate new genetic therapies, while the FDA has announced accelerated approval for two effective therapies.