Laredo, Texas - U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials from the three principal field branches of Field Operations, Border Patrol and Air and Marine together with state and local officials and law enforcement representatives gathered today to honor the memory of those lost in the 9/11 attacks a decade ago and to recommit to CBP's vital border security mission by re-taking the oath of office.
The event featured remarks delivered by Director of Field Operations Gene Garza, Chief Patrol Agent Robert L. Harris and Director of Air Operations Troy Meridith. Laredo Mayor Raul Salinas also delivered remarks on behalf of the city.
CBP showed videos highlighting the hard work and diverse duties undertaken in a variety of environments by CBP officers and agents in the field. DFO Garza, CPA Harris and DAO Meridith cemented the agency's commitment to duty to country and to honor the memory of those fallen on 9/11 by re-administering the Oath of Office to all CBP uniformed and civilian personnel.
CBP officials also bestowed awards commemorating years of service to the agency and a Blue Eagle award for notable enforcement activity. The conference room featured displays of news clippings and related memorabilia from the 9/11 attacks.
"I am proud of the dedication of our CBP officers, agriculture specialists, import specialists and support personnel who are committed to upholding the CBP mission and we stand together with our brothers and sisters in green and tan in keeping our borders secure," said Eugenio Garza Jr., director, field operations, Laredo.
"September 11 is a day to remember all those who died as a result of evil, a day to remember those brave Americans who lost their lives fighting evil and a day to say thank you to our first responders," said Robert L. Harris, Chief Patrol Agent, Laredo Sector Border Patrol. "We are safer today because of our all-volunteer military, dedicated public servants and a supportive community."
"Our air interdiction agents and support personnel play an integral part in CBP's border security mission by providing air support to CBP officers and agents on the ground. We are proud to serve as part of the world's largest law enforcement air force," said Meridith, air operations director.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between the official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.