The White House lowered its U.S. flag to half mast on Sunday, to show respect three days after a police officer died from injuries suffered while fending off supporters of President Donald Trump who stormed the Capitol building.
Trump later issued an order directing that flags be lowered at all embassies, consular offices and U.S. facilities abroad, including military installations and naval vessels.
He called the action of lowering the flags “a sign of respect for the service and sacrifice” of Capitol Police officers Brian Sicknick, who died on Thursday, and Howard Liebengood, whose death was announced on Sunday.
Trump had faced calls from lawmakers from both parties to take the step in honor of Sicknick after protesters invaded the seat of Congress in Washington. Trump made the decision by himself, without recommendations from his aides.
“He made the ultimate sacrifice, for the greater glory, and laid down his life in protection of our democracy,” Representative Nancy Mace, a South Carolina Republican, said of Sicknick in a letter to Trump on Sunday. Noting that the flag over the Capitol dome has been lowered to half-staff, she said “we ask that the flag flown above the White House be ordered to do the same.”
Virginia Governor Ralph Northam, earlier on Sunday ordered U.S. and Virginia flags to be flown at half-staff to honor Sicknick. Governor Phil Murphy of New Jersey, Sicknick’s home state, issued a similar order.