Jul 17 2008

Shelby Announces Renaming of Colombian Embassy

FY 2009 State and Foreign Operations Appropriations Bill Passes Senate Appropriations Committee

U.S. Senator Richard Shelby (R-Ala.), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, announced Committee approval of the fiscal year 2009 State and Foreign Operations Appropriations bill.  Senator Shelby was successful in including a provision to rename a building at the U.S. Embassy in Bogotá, Colombia after CW5 Thomas J. Janis, a former resident of Pike Road, Alabama.

CW5 Janis was shot and killed on February 13, 2003, in Colombia by fighters from the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Columbia (FARC) after the plane he was piloting crashed during an intelligence mission.  Three Americans aboard the flight were kidnapped and a Colombian Army sergeant who was also on the plane was killed by members of the FARC.  Reports indicate that CW5 Janis showed extreme bravery and composure during the ordeal by safely landing the plane and getting all of the passengers out unharmed. 

“Reports indicate that CW5 Janis showed extreme bravery and composure during his ordeal by safely landing the plane and getting all of the passengers out unharmed,” said Shelby. “His actions that day illustrated what many of his colleagues already knew about him; that he was tough, caring and a man of character.  His courageous actions that day merit naming a U.S. embassy compound structure in Bogotá in tribute of one of my very heroic constituents, CW5 Thomas J. Janis.”