May 25, 2017

Van Hollen Honors Second Lieutenant Collins on the Senate Floor

Today U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen spoke on the Senate floor to honor the life of Second Lieutenant Richard Wilbur Collins III, who was murdered this past weekend in an incident that the FBI is investigating as a hate crime. Click here for video of the Senator's remarks. A transcript of his remarks is below:

"I stand to pay tribute to a distinguished young man from the State of Maryland, Second Lieutenant Richard Wilbur Collins III - a brave, brilliant, passionate, selfless, and kind American hero. Second Lieutenant Collins, a resident of Calvert County, Maryland, was a 23-year-old student at Bowie State University, where he was a member of the Bowie ROTC program and was airborne certified.

"On May 18th, just last week, he was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the United States Army's intelligence branch. Second Lieutenant Collins was scheduled to graduate with a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration from Bowie State University earlier this week. His future could not have been brighter.

"Tragically, Second Lieutenant Collins' life was cut short by a horrific act of violence that the FBI is investigating as a hate crime. We must bring the perpetrator of this evil act to justice and directly confront the racism behind it. Second Lieutenant Collins' selfless and courageous contributions to our state and nation will continue to have a lasting impact on those who knew and loved him, and on the broader community who learned of his tragic and senseless death.

"At the young age of 23, Second Lieutenant Collins raised his right hand to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. He was a young man of extraordinary courage and ability, and will be deeply missed by all who knew him.

"Second Lieutenant Collins leaves behind his grieving family, his father, U.S. veteran Richard W. Collins II, his mother Dawn Collins, and his sister Robin Collins, and countless friends. Mr. President, I ask my colleagues to join me in remembering Second Lieutenant Richard Wilbur Collins III and in expressing our deepest condolences to his family and friends."