June 09, 2010
On June 10, 2009, Special Police Officer Stephen Tyrone Johns died heroically in the line of duty, protecting Museum visitors and staff from an avowed antisemite, Holocaust denier and racist. He is deeply missed by the Museum community and all who knew him, and the Johns family will always be in our thoughts and prayers.
The Museum wishes to express its gratitude for the tremendous outpouring of support it has received from around the world in the wake of this tragedy, particularly the thousands of individuals and organizations who so generously contributed to the special fund established to benefit the Johns family. (This fund was closed in October 2009.)
The Museum was created to confront the very hate that took Officer Johns’ life. To honor his memory, the Museum has established the Stephen Tyrone Johns Summer Youth Leadership Program to challenge young people to embrace the ideals he sacrificed his life protecting. This unique annual program, which will launch this month, is an intensive, seven-week Museum internship for approximately 50 outstanding Washington-area students.
On Thursday, June 10, 2010, the Museum’s opening will be delayed by 30 minutes – to 10:30 a.m., so that Officer Johns’ colleagues can participate in a private commemoration. In addition, on that day the Museum flags will fly at half staff in his memory. A memorial plaque honoring Officer Johns was unveiled in the Museum last fall.
Following the private memorial service, there will be a press availability with Museum Director Sara J. Bloomfield on Thursday on June 10 at 10:30 a.m. on the Museum’s Eisenhower Plaza located on Raoul Wallenberg Pl, SW (15th St.) Media interested in attending should contact Andy Hollinger at 202-488-6133 or firstname.lastname@example.org