TRIBUTE TO MATT MEAD; Congressional Record Vol. 164, No. 159
(Senate - September 26, 2018)

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[Pages S6336-S6337]
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                          TRIBUTE TO MATT MEAD

  Mr. BARRASSO. Mr. President, today I wish to share my appreciation 
for Governor Matt Mead. He will complete his second term as Wyoming's 
commander in chief this year. It is an honor to recognize his devotion 
to our servicemen and women.
  Here in Wyoming, we rely on the cowboy code. The Code of the West was 
adopted as the State's official code of ethics. It reminds us to ``live 
each day with courage'' and ``be tough, but fair.'' It also reminds us 
to ``take pride in our work.''
  Governor Mead can certainly take pride in his role as a champion and 
advocate for Wyoming's military members and their families. Since 2008, 
Matt attended 22 deployment ceremonies for members of the Wyoming Air 
and Army National Guards. In 8 years, exactly 2,235 airmen and soldiers 
have been deployed to fight the war on terror and protect our Nation.
  Matt knows the importance of supporting our troops, both at home and 
overseas. He visited deployed troops on six separate occasions to bring 
words of support and encouragement from home. Similarly, he was on the 
ground with families and friends at 22 homecoming events, greeting 
returning men and women with a smile on his face.
  Governor Mead is also dedicated to thanking those who have already 
served. During his tenure, he attended 53 Veterans Day and welcome home 
events. These welcome home ceremonies began as a way to honor veterans 
of the Korean conflict and the Vietnam war who returned home without 
receiving proper recognition of their service and sacrifice.
  In addition, he signed legislation designating Interstate 25, which 
runs north to south from Buffalo, Wyoming, to the Colorado border, as 
the Vietnam Veterans Welcome Home Highway.
  Finally, under his direction, the Wyoming Veterans Commission 
assisted over 8,000 veterans and family members with problems or 
requests for information. Matt's determination to provide high-quality 
care and support to Wyoming's veterans is unparalleled.
  Matt does not stop at honoring veterans and supporting Active-Duty 
servicemembers. In 2011, he saw a need to recognize those just 
beginning their service. Now, he regularly hosts enlistment ceremonies 
for young men and women who commit to joining the Armed Forces.
  At these special events, Governor Mead takes time to share his 
appreciation for their bravery, patriotism, and desire to serve our 
Nation. His warm words of inspiration provide reassurance to these 
young people and their families as they embark on this momentous 
journey. Since the first ceremony, a total of 3,035 enlistees have been 
recognized for answering the call of duty.
  Governor Mead is not alone in his efforts to celebrate their selfless 
sacrifice. He is aided by the Hon. Gary Hartman, who serves as Mead's 
military and veteran policy analyst. Judge Hartman is a U.S. Air Force 
veteran who served in Vietnam. Judge Hartman coordinates each ceremony 
and plays a vital role in ensuring each and every one of these talented 
individuals is celebrated.
  In addition to his military service, Judge Hartman served for 25 
years on the Fifth Judicial District Court. His extensive knowledge of 
the law, along with his passion for veterans' affairs, allowed him to 
help bring a veterans treatment court to Laramie County. The program's 
unique approach aims to add much-needed mental health and mentoring 
services to veterans facing criminal charges. His experiences, both in 
the Air Force and on the bench, make him a proud advocate who never 
hesitates to uphold, encourage, and defend veteran causes.
  Wyoming holds two enlistment ceremonies each year. On November 12, 
Matt, with Judge Hartman's assistance, will host his final ceremony as 
Governor. Addressing a new group of enlistees, he will impart wisdom 
and speak about Wyoming's legacy of service. I have been honored to 
attend many of these ceremonies. It will again be my honor to stand 
beside my friend as we commend these fine young folks.
  President Teddy Roosevelt famously said, ``People don't care how much 
you know until they know how much you care.'' Time and time again, 
Governor Matt Mead demonstrates his respect and gratitude for our 
servicemembers. He leads with honor, integrity, and pride, and our 
State and Nation are better because of his dedication.

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