Congressman Chris Smith honored a 28-year police veteran on Friday evening in Spring Lake by presenting him with a national award for his work in saving the life of a father of two.
“The Talmud says ‘whoever saves one life, saves the entire world.’ Every life is precious, unique and irreplaceable,” Smith said on Friday at an event hosted by the Spring Lake Heights Police Officers Association.
Smith presented Sergeant Andy O’Neill of the Spring Lake Heights Police Department with the ServiceWear Apparel Workwear MVP 2017 award, which O’Neill won after being one of 50 nominees nationwide for the award. He will receive $1,000, as well as $1,000 worth of apparel from ServiceWear.
On June 18, Father’s Day, O’Neill was working a shift that he was not scheduled for, due to his voluntarily giving up his day off so another officer with a newborn son could be home with his family. He responded to an emergency call where a father of two daughters had suffered a cardiac arrest in front of his family.
O’Neill, an emergency medical technician, worked with fellow emergency responders to administer CPR and successfully revive the man, saving his life.
“It took a team, but that team, that day had an extraordinary leader. And the man whose heart had stopped is here tonight,” Smith said.
Smith also called attention to the work of police officers and first responders in serving the public.
“Thank you Andy–and every police officer–for making our community safer,” he said. “And special thanks to your families for the sacrifice you made.”
Congressman Chris Smith will present a national award to Sergeant Andy O’Neill of the Spring Lake Heights Police Department on Friday evening, for his actions that saved the life of a father of two back in June.
“We need to respect and honor those who are the front line, not just on protecting our communities like Sergeant O’Neill, but also they’re on the front in providing that life-saving emergency care that really is the difference between life and death, and this here is a classic example,” Smith stated on Friday morning in an interview on NJ 101.5 FM.
Smith will present Sergeant O’Neill, a 28-year police veteran, with the ServiceWear Apparel Workwear MVP 2017 award on Friday evening at an event hosted by the Spring Lake Heights Police Officers Association.
Sergeant O’Neill was elected to receive the award because of his life-saving action taken on June 18, 2017, on Father’s Day. O’Neill was originally not scheduled to work that day, but he took the slot of a fellow officer who had a newborn son so that officer could be home with his family.
While responding to another emergency, O’Neill received a call that a father of two daughters had suffered cardiac arrest in front of his family. Leaving his partner behind to deal with the previous situation, O’Neill rushed to the scene and, together with other emergency medical responders, performed CPR, applied a defibrillator, and helped revive the father.
“My dad had recently died, and I wasn’t really going to let a guy die on Father’s Day in front of his kids,” O’Neill said on Friday.
O’Neill was one of 50 workers nationwide nominated for the award. He will receive $1,000, as well as $1,000 worth of apparel from ServiceWear. The man he helped rescue will also be present at the ceremony to thank him for his service.
“Because of Sgt. O’Neill, he is living today,” Smith said, praising O’Neill for being “selfless” and for his “unbelievable service to the community.”
O’Neill appeared with Smith on NJ 101.5 FM with host Bill Spadea to preview the award ceremony. To listen to their interview, click here or on file below.
Police officers and first responders deserve respect and honor for putting their lives on the line daily, Smith said. He noted that, according to the most recent FBI statistics, 53,000 police officers were assaulted last year, and 118 died in the line of duty, up 37 percent from the previous year.
“They’re the first on the scene so often when there’s a medical emergency,” Smith said. “This is what our police officers do every single day.”Read More
Alongside advocates and supporters from throughout the Monmouth and Ocean County region, Rep. Chris Smith (NJ-04) today helped cut the ribbon at the Alzheimer’s Association 2017 Walk to End Alzheimer's, held in his congressional district in Bradley Beach. Smith is the founder and Chairman of the Bipartisan, Bicameral Congressional Task Force on Alzheimer's disease, and a long-time, effective advocate for Alzheimer’s funding and research.
“Today, five million people suffer from Alzheimer’s disease and unless we find a way of slowing its progression—and God willing, a cure—the number will triple by 2050,” said Smith who co-authored the bipartisan National Alzheimer’s Project Act (NAPA, P.L. 111-375), which requires the creation of an annually-updated strategic National Alzheimer’s Plan to fight Alzheimer’s and help those with the disease and their families.
“Your participation today and your walking to raise awareness and funds for Alzheimer’s research, gives family members and people suffering from the disease hope that significant progress will be made,” Smith said to the crowd of thousands who were not deterred by the rain.
“As co-founder and chairman of the Alzheimer’s caucus since 2000, I am pleased to report that we have tripled Alzheimer’s research dollars from just under $600 million in 2015 to $1.8 billion in 2018. That investment in research is reason for serious hope that we will someday soon find a cure,” he added.
An estimated 2,000 people in purple shirts crowded the boardwalk for the event, which was at times hopeful, tearful, inspirational and promising. According to Christine Hopkins, Alzheimer’s Association Ambassador and Bradley Beach Walk Co-Chair, over 150 teams of walkers are expected to raise $200,000 for Alzheimer’s awareness and research at today’s event.
Held annually in more than 600 communities nationwide, the Alzheimer's Association Walk to End Alzheimer’s is the world’s largest event to raise awareness and funds for Alzheimer’s care, support and research.
In addition to his pioneering work as an advocate for the those suffering from and caring for those with Alzheimer’s disease, Rep. Smith is also chairman of the House subcommittee which oversees global health issues and held the first ever congressional hearing examining the global strategies to address Alzheimer’s disease, entitled “Global Strategies to Combat the Devastating Health and Economic Impacts of Alzheimer’s Disease” in 2011, and a second in 2013.
Smith is also working to garner added support for legislation he introduced last year, Kevin and Avonte’s Law, which will help protect seniors with Alzheimer’s who are prone to wandering, and children with developmental disabilities, such as autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Smith noted that family members are particularly supportive of the proposed Kevin and Avonte’s Law as it will fund programs designed to help family members find loved ones in the critical first 24 hours.
“According to the Alzheimer’s Association, half of Alzheimer’s patients who wander will suffer serious injury, sometimes fatal, if not found within the first 24 hours,” Smith said. “Once enacted, this legislation will make grants available to law enforcement agencies and non-profits to provide training to prevent wandering and implement lifesaving technology programs to find individuals who have wandered.”
The bill passed the House last year but the session ended before the Senate took action. Smith is working with like-minded senators to help move the bill through that chamber in a more timely fashion this Congress.
Smith joined State Sen. Jen Beck, Freeholder Director Lillian Burry and Freeholders Tom Arnone, John Curley, Gary Rich and Serena DiMaso, as well as Sheriff Shaun Golden and County Engineer Joseph Ettore at the groundbreaking. Colts Neck Deputy Mayor, J. P.Bartolomeo and Committeemen Thomas Orgo and Frank G. Rizzuto also attended.
Smith pointed to a hearing he co-chaired earlier this year where he specifically criticized UNESCO for passing a resolution that whitewashed historical Jewish and Christian ties to the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, as well as anti-Semitic actions by other UN entities. “The UNESCO resolution last year that ignored Jewish and Christian ties to the Temple Mount, the U.N. General Assembly vote in December singling out Israeli settlements while minimizing egregious acts of terrorism and the stream of anti-Israel resolutions that regularly emanate from the so-called Human Rights Council are all evidence of a double-standard emblematic of systemic problems that must be addressed at the U.N.,” said Smith at the time. Hearing co-chair Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen of the Middle East and North Africa Subcommittee voiced similar concerns.
Smith was recently appointed to a fourth term as a Congressional Representative of the United States to the United Nations General Assembly. Smith previously served in a similar capacity under President George H.W. Bush (1989), President George W. Bush (2009) and President Barack Obama (2015).
After the United States withdrew from UNESCO, Israel announced that it would be doing the same.
This is not the first time that the United States has withdrawn from UNESCO over the organization’s radical tendencies. President Ronald Reagan did the same in 1984, when the organization had a decidedly pro-Soviet and anti-American tilt.
The withdrawal from UNESCO will take effect at the end of next year.
“Bump stocks, used in the mass shooting in Las Vegas, enable semi-automatic weapons to fire hundreds of rounds per minute,” Smith said.
“I support the ban of these devices, and am an original cosponsor of bipartisan legislation introduced today by Rep. Carlos Curbelo (R-FL) to prohibit the manufacture, sale, and use of these devices," he said.
The impact of possible cuts or proposed changes on U.S. policy and programming in Africa in the FY2018 budget will be the topic of a hearing set for Wednesday which will be held by U.S. Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ), chairman of the House Subcommittee on Africa.
“There was some real concern when the intention to make deep cuts to foreign aid and foreign operations was originally made known by the Administration,” said Chairman Smith. “Apparently, Africa was never the main target of such cuts. But what will be the eventual impact of cuts and reorganization that do take place? This hearing is intended to ascertain the impact on U.S. policy and programming in Africa in the FY2018 budget that is being finalized over the next few weeks.”
Who: Chairman Smith (NJ-04), Senior Member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee and the House Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations; other members of the Committee
The Honorable Donald Yamamoto
Acting Assistant Secretary
Bureau of African Affairs, U.S. Department of State
Acting Assistant Administrator
Bureau for Africa, U.S. Agency for International Development
What: House hearing on State Dept. Budget for Africa in FY2018
When: Wednesday, Oct. 11, 2017 2:00 PM
Where: Rayburn House Office Building, Room 2200 (second floor)
Members of a joint United States-Niger patrol were ambushed in a fatal attack Wednesday in southeastern Niger while they were responding to an assault by a jihadist group on the town of Tongo Tongo, an incident that demonstrates the need for continued international attention to the growing militant Islamist threat in Africa’s Sahel region, said U.S. Rep. Chris Smith, a senior member of the House Foreign Affairs committee and Chairman of the House panel on Africa.
Three U.S soldiers were among the killed, along with five Nigerien troops, and several other soldiers in the patrol were wounded.
“Niger and the other countries in the Sahel are under constant threat from armed, militant groups,” Smith said. “The United States has been helping Niger, Nigeria, Chad and Cameroon to fight the Boko Haram insurgency, but we must remain vigilant and responsive to the ongoing jihadist threat from al-Qaeda in the Islamic Mahgreb out of Mali and ISIS attacks out of Libya.”
According to a June White House letter, the United States has approximately 645 military personnel deployed to Niger largely supporting counterterrorism operations in Niger and the Lake Chad region. This was the first attack on U.S. forces on the ground in Niger.
2373 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Elected in 1980, Rep. Chris Smith (R-Robbinsville, N.J.) is currently in his 17th term in the U.S. House of Representatives, and serves residents in the Fourth Congressional District of New Jersey. Smith, 60, currently serves as a senior member on the Foreign Affairs Committee, and is chairman of its Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights and International Organization Subcommittee. In 2011-2012 he chaired both the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE), and the Congressional-Executive Commission on China. He also serves as “Special Representative” on Human Trafficking for the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly, and as an executive member of the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission. Previously, he served as Chairman of the Veterans Committee (two terms) and Chairman of the Foreign Affairs’ Subcommittee on Human Rights and International Operations and the Subcommittee on Africa.
Smith has long chaired a number of bipartisan congressional caucuses (working groups) including the Pro-life (31 years), Autism (15 years), Alzheimer’s (13 years), Lyme Disease (nineyears), Spina Bifida (nine years), Human Trafficking (nine years), Refugees (nine years), and Combating Anti-Semitism caucuses, and serves on caucuses on Bosnia, Uganda and Vietnam.
According to the independent watchdog organization Govtrack, as of January 2014 Smith ranks fourth among all 435 Members of the House over the last two decades in the number of laws authored.
He is the author of America’s three landmark anti-human trafficking laws including The Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000, a comprehensive law designed to prevent modern-day slavery, protect victims, and enhance civil and criminal penalties against traffickers, as well as more than a dozen veterans health, education and homeless benefits laws, and laws to boost embassy security, promote democracy, religious freedom, and health care.
Smith is the author of the $265 million Stem Cell Therapeutic and Research Act of 2005 which established a nationwide program for ethical research and treatment using umbilical cord blood and bone marrow cells. That landmark law was reauthorized in September 2010 for another five years.
In October 2011, Smith’s bill, HR 2005, the Combating Autism Reauthorization Act (CARA) of 2011, was signed into law (Public Law PL112-32), a follow-up to his Autism Statistics, Surveillance, Research, and Epidemiology Act (ASSURE) of 2000.
A lifelong New Jerseyan, Congressman Smith graduated from The College of New Jersey with a degree in business administration. Prior to being elected to Congress, he helped run a small business– his family’s wholesale sporting goods corporation. He is also the former Executive Director of the New Jersey Right to Life Committee.
The congressman is married to his wife of 35 years, Marie, and they have four grown children.
Pleased to join Sgt. Andy O'Neill & friends/family as he was honored with national award for his life-saving action… https://t.co/XpX4qteitJ
Lifting the Jones Act - an important step in providing humanitarian relief to PR. Supplies & resources remain an ongoing need.