While we are celebrating Memorial Day and the armed forces, hold a thought for agents of the CIA, which last week held its annual remembrance for those lost in service of the CIA, and attended by hundreds of CIA staff and family members. This year the CIA added a new star to its memorial wall and more than a dozen names to its Book of Honor. Kimberly Dozier reports:
With the addition of the star for [Jeffrey] Patneau [killed in Yemen, 2008], the wall now commemorates the lives of 103 Americans who died in service of the CIA, “never for acclaim, always for country,” [Director David] Petraeus said at the annual event attended by hundreds of employees and family members of those lost. The rememberance came just days ahead of Memorial Day, when the nation remembers its military veterans and those who died in war. The addition of 15 names to the CIA’s Book of Honor means family members can openly acknowledge where their loved ones worked when they died.
I’ve been privileged to see the memorial wall and the Book of Honor, and it is a moving and sobering experience. Spare a thought this Memorial Day for the CIA and its difficult and sometimes dangerous work.