Capitol Police Officer Caroline Edwards, who was injured after she was part of an altercation involving members of the Proud Boys while defending the US Capitol during the riot, said that the day of the insurrection was the first time her patriotism had been questioned, during her opening statement.
“I was called a lot of things on January 6, 2021 and the days after. I was called Nancy Pelosi’s dog, called incompetent, called a hero and a villain. I was called a traitor to my country, my oath and my Constitution. In actuality, I was none of those things. I was an American standing face to face with other Americans, asking myself, how many times, many, many, times, how we had gotten here? I have been called names before, but never had my patriotism or duty been called into question. I, who got up every day, no matter how early the hour or how late I got in the night before, to put on my uniform and to protect America symbol of democracy. I, who spent countless hours in the baking sun and freezing snow to make sure that America’s elected officials were able to do their job. I, whose literal blood, sweat and tears were shed that day defending the building that I spent countless holidays and weekends working in,” Edwards said.
Edwards shared that her grandfather fought in the Korean War and “lived with the rest of his days with bullets and shrapnel in his legs, but never once complained about his sacrifice.”
“I would like to think that he would be proud of me, proud of his granddaughter that stood her ground that day and continued fighting, even though she was wounded, like he did, many years ago. I am my grandfather’s granddaughter, proud to put on a uniform and serve my country. They dared to question my honor, they dared to question my loyalty and they dared to question my duty. I am a proud American, and I will gladly sacrifice everything to make sure that the America my grandfather defended is here for many years to come,” Edwards said.