SALT LAKE CITY — Lawmakers in the Utah House and Senate took a moment Friday to pay their respects to Utah's fallen sons and daughters.
The Legislature welcomed the friends and family of nine Utah servicemen who died in 2016, and honored their passing with a citation and a moment of silence in remembrance of their sacrifice.
"May you know of our love, our solemn respect for you and those we have lost. May the sting of death be removed, and may the grave be robbed of victory," said Rep. Justin Fawson, R-North Ogden.
Fawson, a veteran of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, held back tears as he offered remarks to the families of fallen servicemen and recited Mary Elizabeth Frye's poem "Do Not Stand at My Grave and Weep."
"It is a somber reminder to us, as public servants, of the service that happens around us every single day," said House Speaker Greg Hughes, R-Draper.
On the Senate floor, Sen. Allen Christensen, R-North Ogden, read the names of the troops who died and the dates of their deaths, and asked the gathered families to raise the pictures they were carrying of loved ones.
"We get to be here today — in the Senate, in peace — because those who have gone before have paved the way for us to enjoy this peace and take it for granted," Christensen said. "There’s nothing we can say or do here that will fill the void that these men have created with their passing."
Contributing: Lisa Riley Roche