The Air Force veteran who was shot and killed by Capitol Police inside the U.S. Capitol building as throngs of people stormed the building Wednesday was remembered fondly by her family members.
Babbitt, 35, was among a mob of people who stormed the building to protest against the certification of President-elect Joe Biden by Congress. In the midst of the chaos, she was shot and killed by an unnamed officer, according to the Capitol Police.
Babbitt’s grandfather, Tony Mazziott, told ABC News’ “Good Morning America” that Babbitt, 35, was an “excellent patriot” and a “loving person.”
“She served time in the military and she’s passionate about everything, particularly Donald Trump for some reason,” he said. Family members said Babbitt served more than a decade in the Air Force.
He added to CBS: “She died at a young age. She did many tours in Afghanistan for our country and shot by someone in our country.”
Babbitt’s husband, Aaron Babbitt, added that she “loved her country and she was doing what she thought was right to support her country, joining up with like-minded people that also love their president and their country.”
And her ex-husband, Timothy McEntee, said she was “a wonderful woman with a big heart and a strong mind,” according to the Washington Examiner. “I am in a state of shock and feel absolutely terrible for her family,” McEntee said. “She loved America with all her heart. It’s truly a sad day.”
McEntee, who was married to Babbitt for 14 years, said they served in the U.S. Air Force together.
“[I] immediately knew it was her, but was unaware she was in town, so I initially had doubts because she lives in California,” McEntee said. “But [I] reached out to a friend, and he said she was in town for the rally.”
Police also confirmed the death of Brian D. Sicknick, a U.S. Capitol Police officer who died Thursday night.
“At approximately 9:30 p.m. this evening (January 7, 2021), United States Capitol Police Officer Brian D. Sicknick passed away due to injuries sustained while on-duty,” a statement from the U.S. Capitol Police said. “Officer Sicknick was responding to the riots on Wednesday, January 6, 2021, at the U.S. Capitol and was injured while physically engaging with protesters. He returned to his division office and collapsed,” the statement added.
Authorities said that other than Babbitt’s death, one woman and two men died after suffering “medical emergencies” during the chaos.
The Capitol Police stated the officer who shot Babbitt was placed on administrative leave, per department policy, and the officer was suspended. The D.C. Metropolitan Police Department is also investigating the shooting.
U.S. Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund, under pressure from Schumer, Pelosi, and other congressional leaders, was forced to resign. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell asked for and received the resignation of the Sergeant at Arms of the Senate, Michael Stenger, effective immediately. Paul Irving, the longtime Sergeant at Arms of the House, also resigned.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.