Text: H.Res.1684 — 111th Congress (2009-2010)All Bill Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in House (09/29/2010)

2d Session
H. RES. 1684

Honoring the memories of Ronald H. Brown, 32 other remarkable Americans and 2 distinguished Croatians who prematurely lost their lives on April 3, 1996, while on a trade mission to the Balkans.

September 29, 2010

Mr. Turner (for himself and Mr. Delahunt) submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce


Honoring the memories of Ronald H. Brown, 32 other remarkable Americans and 2 distinguished Croatians who prematurely lost their lives on April 3, 1996, while on a trade mission to the Balkans.

Whereas, after visiting troops at the American headquarters in Tuzla, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the delegation aircraft crashed into a mountainside while attempting an instrument approach to Cilipi airport, outside of Dubrovnik, Croatia;

Whereas, the aircraft carried U.S. Secretary of Commerce Ronald H. Brown, a public servant, who defended the United States as a soldier, bettered our society as a civil rights pioneer, and built economic bridges for people of all races and creeds as the U.S. Secretary of Commerce;

Whereas, Ronald H. Brown served as the first African-American United States Secretary of Commerce from January 22, 1993, until his honorable service to our country came to an unexpected end on April 3, 1996, in that tragic airplane accident;

Whereas, 32 remarkable American government and business leaders as well as a Croatian photographer and interpreter also lost their lives in the accident;

Whereas, the contributions of all of the deceased ultimately promoted Bosnia and Herzegovina’s transition towards peace, stability and economic viability;

Whereas, Secretary Brown’s mission advanced the goals of the Dayton Peace Accords, negotiated at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio, concluded on November 21, 1995, when the leaders of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, and Serbia all agreed to a breakthrough peace settlement to halt conflicts that began in Bosnia and Herzegovina in April 1992;

Whereas, on December 14, 1995, the General Framework Agreement for Peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina, known as the Dayton Accords, ended a conflict that threatened to destabilize Europe and resulted in the death of approximately 250,000 people, and the displacement of more than two million men, women and children;

Whereas, President Bill Clinton charged Secretary Brown, those who joined him in this mission of peace, and those who followed him on future missions, to contribute to the successful implementation of the civilian aspects of the Dayton Accords; by starting the economic reconstruction and inviting U.S. companies to help maintain the peace through creating economic opportunity;

Whereas, Secretary Brown and those who followed him in future missions promoted prosperity in the Balkans, established U.S. commercial presence there increasing the efforts for peace through openness and trade opportunities;

Whereas, every participant brought hope and inspiration to the war torn region through the U.S. investment in reconstructing buildings, rebuilding water and energy infrastructure, and revitalizing banking and tourism industries;

Whereas, Secretary Ron Brown, along with the outstanding business leaders, brave members of the military, brilliant correspondent and dedicated public servants on the mission, sought to highlight the strength of the U.S. economy as a positive force for peace;

Whereas, on April 7, 1996, President Bill Clinton honored the patriotism of the dead by calling them “the best of America” and recalling that “they believed that America, through their efforts, could help restore a broken land, help to heal a people of their hatreds, help to bring a better tomorrow through honest work and shared enterprise”;

Whereas, the United States negotiating team, led by Richard Holbrooke, guided peace negotiations endorsed by members of the European Union and Russian Federation, and ultimately enabled the transition within the Balkan states from the former Yugoslavia’s communist regime to an open market economy; and

Whereas the mission and sacrifice by Secretary Brown laid the foundation for Bosnia and Herzegovina’s eventual successful transition to free markets, as well as Slovenia’s accession to the European Union (EU) and adoption of its currency, Croatia’s progress towards EU membership expected in 2012, Montenegro’s May 2010 Stabilization and Association Agreement with the EU, Serbia’s December 22, 2009, application for EU membership and Macedonia’s accession negotiations which commenced on October 14, 2009, for EU membership: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That the House of Representatives—

(1) honors the memories of Secretary of Commerce Ronald H. Brown, and 32 other remarkable Americans and two distinguished Croatian citizens who lost their lives on April 3, 1996, serving their countries on a trade mission to the Balkans;

(2) commends the service of the following Americans: Staff Sergeant Gerald Aldrich (Flight Mechanic), Duane Christian (Security Officer for Secretary Brown), Barry Conrad (Chairman and CEO of Barrington Group, Miami, Florida), Paul Cushman III (Chairman and CEO of Riggs International Banking Corp., Washington, DC), Adam Darling (Confidential Assistant for Secretary Brown), Captain Ashley James Davis (Pilot), Gail Dobert (Deputy Director, Department of Commerce Office of Business Liaison), Robert Donovan (President and CEO, ABB Inc., Norwalk, Connecticut), Claudio Elia (Chairman and CEO, Air & Water Technologies Corp., Somerville, New Jersey), Staff Sergeant Robert Farrington, Jr. (Steward), David Ford (President and CEO, InterGuard Corp. of Guardian International, Auburn Hills, Michigan), Carol Hamilton (Press Secretary for Secretary Brown), Kathryn Hoffman (Senior Advisor for Strategic Scheduling and Special Initiatives for Secretary Brown), Lee Jackson (Treasury Department), Steven Kaminski (Commercial Counselor, Department of Commerce U.S. and Foreign Commercial Services), Katheryn Kellogg (Confidential Assistant, Department of Commerce Office of Business Liaison), Technical Sergeant Shelley Kelly (Steward), James Lewek (Analyst, Central Intelligence Agency), Frank Maier (President, Enserch International Ltd., Dallas, Texas), Charles Meissner (Assistant Secretary of Commerce for International Trade), William Morton (Deputy Assistant Secretary for International Economic Development, Department of Commerce), Walter Murphy (Senior Vice President, AT&T Submarine Systems Inc., Morristown, New Jersey) Lawrence Payne (Special Assistant, Department of Commerce U.S. and Foreign Commercial Services), Nathaniel Nash (Frankfurt Bureau Chief, New York Times), Leonard Pieroni (Chairman and CEO, Parsons Corp., Pasadena, California), Captain Timothy Schafer (Pilot), John Scoville (Chairman, Harza Engineering Co., Chicago, Illinois), I. Donald Terner (President, Bridge Housing Corp., San Francisco, California), P. Stuart Tholan (President, Bechtel-Europe/Africa/Middle East/Southwest Asia, San Francisco, California), Sergeant Cheryl Ann Turnage (Steward), Naomi Warbasse (International Trade Specialist, Department of Commerce), and Robert Whittaker (Chairman and CEO, Foster Wheeler Energy International, Clinton, New Jersey);

(3) recognizes the contributions of Croatian citizens Nikša Antonini (photographer) and Dragica Lendić-Bedek (interpreter), who also sacrificed their lives in the effort to promote peace and prosperity in their homeland, and for the benefit of their countrymen; and

(4) extends its deep gratitude to the contributions of all of these brave and dedicated men and women, both Americans and Croats, who helped to put the Balkans on the path towards peace, stability and economic viability by making this visionary mission to Bosnia and Herzegovina; and who thereby worked to share with other countries the chance to live the Dream of peace and prosperity, which is the American Dream.