78R9665 JHS-D

By:  Eiland                                                       H.R. No. 763

WHEREAS, The Galveston Police Department (GPD) recently deployed its marine unit and dive team to assist in the search for and recovery of debris from the tragic explosion of the space shuttle Columbia; and WHEREAS, Working in conjunction with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, NASA, the Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Navy, and a host of federal, state, and local organizations, members of the GPD Marine Unit and Dive Team have been using sonar scanning equipment to locate debris in Sabine County's Toledo Bend Reservoir; their careful planning and execution of this logistically demanding task have been crucial elements in the overall success of the mission; and WHEREAS, The search and recovery efforts have included the following dedicated professionals: Sergeant Richard Kershaw, Sergeant David N. White, Jr., Sergeant Tim Galvan, Sergeant Michael Riedel, Corporal Richard D. McCullor II, Corporal Ronny Phillips, Corporal John W. Courtney, Jr., Corporal Pete Contenta, Corporal Gordon D. Pean III, Corporal Jeremi Smart, Officer Dion Watson, Officer Marcus Pitre, and Officer Larry Chambers; and WHEREAS, Special recognition is also deserved for the many residents of Sabine County who have generously provided food and encouragement for the search and recovery specialists throughout the duration of their stay in the area; and WHEREAS, By using their skill and expertise to locate fragments from the space shuttle, the dedicated members of the GPD Marine Unit and Dive Team are making a vital contribution to the successful completion of this mammoth undertaking, and their efforts will undoubtedly aid in this nation's ability to discover the cause of this unfortunate disaster and perhaps help to prevent future tragedies; now, therefore, be it RESOLVED, That the House of Representatives of the 78th Texas Legislature hereby commend Police Chief Robert Pierce and the members of the Galveston Police Department Marine Unit and Dive Team for their vital role in the search for and recovery of debris from the space shuttle Columbia explosion and extend to them sincere appreciation for a job well done; and, be it further RESOLVED, That an official copy of this resolution be prepared for the Galveston Police Department as an expression of high regard by the Texas House of Representatives.