Capitol Police buried one of their own on Friday, one day after Delaware lawmakers honored him on the House and Senate floors.
Standing beside a portrait of Capitol Police Officer Vernon J. Alston Jr ., a resident of Magnolia, Del., Sens. Thomas R. Carper and Chris Coons commended the 20-year veteran of the force.
The Democrats' remarks came as a contingent of Alston’s colleagues, including Chief Kim C. Dine, shuttled between Dover, Del. and Washington on Thursday and Friday for memorial and burial services. On the House side, where Alston was most recently posted, Rep. John Carney, D-Del., said Alston "leaves a legacy of service to country that serves as an inspiration to us all.”
While he did not know him personally, Coons said he and Alston shared at least two things in common: “To be in Washington each morning to go to work and to be back in Delaware to see our kids each night.”
Police said Alston, 44, died Jan. 23 at his home when he had a heart attack after shoveling snow as the region was dealt an historic storm that dumped more than two feet of snow in the region.
Carper said Alston epitomized the selflessness of public service.
“Vernon consistently exhibited unwavering courage, devotion to duty and above all honor,” Carper said. “Vernon reminds each of us just how good we can be and ought to be.”
At the memorial service for Alston in Dover, Dine offered condolences to Alston’s family, including his wife and five children, a Capitol Police spokeswoman said.
“He was a man who made an impact, he was a great man, and he will be sorely missed,” Dine said.
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