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Officer Billy Evans Mourned At The Capitol

AILSA CHANG, HOST:

Officer William Evans, also known as Billy, helped protect the Capitol for 18 years. Today, the people he watched over honored his service.

MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

Evans was killed earlier this month in an attack on the Capitol just months after the January 6 insurrection by pro-Trump extremists that killed Officer Brian Sicknick.

A CHANG: The fallen officer's coffin was saluted by his fellow officers as it entered the Capitol building. Inside, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi praised his sacrifice.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

NANCY PELOSI: Just months after the January 6 assault on our democracy, the men and women of the Capitol Police were again called to duty. On April 2, Officer Evans answered that call and giving his life to protect the Capitol and our country, he became a martyr for our democracy.

A CHANG: President Biden also honored Evans. Shortly before he spoke, Evans' daughter dropped a soft toy replica of the Capitol. The president quietly moved to pick it up and return it to the seven-year-old.

KELLY: Reflecting on his own losses, Biden told Evans' wife and children he had some idea how they were feeling, and he tried to reassure the family they would heal.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN: ...That you're all going to know that you're going to make it by holding each other together. Most importantly, by holding Logan and Abigail as tightly as you can. Because as long as you have them, you've got Billy.

A CHANG: William Billy Evans was the sixth U.S. Capitol Police officer to die in the line of duty. The father, brother, husband and officer will lie in honor at the Capitol Rotunda for the rest of the day. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.