WASHINGTON, DC (WTXF/AP) - President Barack Obama honored 13 law enforcement officers who risked their lives to protect others. That includes one from Philadelphia who sadly gave his life.
Mr. Obama presented the Medal of Valor at a ceremony, midday Monday, in the East Room of the White House.
The medals are the nation's highest honor for law enforcement. They recognize exceptional courage to save human life in the face of personal risk.
Philadelphia police Sgt. Robert Wilson III was honored posthumously. Last year, he was killed by a bullet during an armed robbery.
It happened at a Game Stop in North Philadelphia. Sgt. Wilson was just there to get a birthday gift for his son. Instead, he was killed in a gun battle trying to protect customers and store workers from two armed men.
The president said all the award recipients acted without regard for his or her personal safety, and none of the officers sought out the situations that led to the medal. Also, because of their courage, the rest of society can go about living their lives freely.
Also honored: three Santa Monica, California, officers for their response to a 2013 rampage on a community college campus that left five people dead.
And, a suburban Dallas officer receiving the medal killed two armed men in a gunfight outside a provocative contest for caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad.
Obama said the nation has a responsibility to support and listen to those who serve, and he'll keep pushing for bipartisan legislation to make the criminal justice system smarter and fairer.