During this year’s Foreign Affairs Day on Friday, May 4, 2018, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo honored the Associates of the American Foreign Service Worldwide (AAFSW) and its members by paying respect to the Foreign Service Family Members fallen abroad with a brief stop by the AAFSW Wreath and EFM Plaque at the east side of the C Street Lobby (Department of State).
This is the first time that a Secretary of State dedicated time by the EFM Memorial Plaque and AAFSW and its President, Dr. Joanna Athanasopoulos Owen are deeply honored and very appreciative. Secretary Pompeo met and discussed briefly with all the AAFSW members present and expressed his wholehearted support and sincere commitment to the Foreign Service Families. In addition, Secretary of State Pompeo and AAFSW President, Dr. Joanna Athanasopoulos Owen, paid respect to the Foreign Service family members who have fallen abroad exclusively due to terrorist activity, viewing the names that commemorate the memory of these individuals, etched on the distinctive plaque.
Knowing the difficulties that lay ahead, Leonidas, the king of ancient Sparta, chose his 300 men for the ultimate fight against the Persians by “the valor of their women.” In the same sense, we recognize and pay respect to the Foreign Service family members — both men and women — who have fallen abroad, honoring the difficulties of the exciting, yet at times dangerous, lives of those serving alongside their officers in the Foreign Service.
Joanna Athanasopoulos Owen, PhD,