We reported about Joe Biden going to the dignified transfer ceremony at Dover Air Base for the 13 troops who were killed in the suicide bombing attack at the Kabul Airport, and how the meeting with one family member, the wife of Rylee McCollum, did not go well.
Even before the ceremony, the families were making their feelings with Biden known as we said, including with Rylee McCollum’s mother calling into a radio program and calling him a “dementia-ridden piece of crap.”
Now, there’s more detail on that on the reaction of some of the other families to their experiences after meeting with Biden and it isn’t good.
Rylee McCollum’s sister, Roice McCollum, had previously said that they felt the remarks from Biden were scripted and shallow. Now she further said Biden kept checking his watch, which we reported at the time.
“He cannot possibly understand,” Roice said. “My dad and I did not want to speak to him. You cannot kneel on our flag and pretend you care about our troops. You can’t f— up as bad as he did and say you’re sorry. This did not need to happen, and every life is on his hands. The thousands of Afghans who will suffer and be tortured is a direct result of his incompetence.”
Mark Schmitz, the father of Jared Schmitz, said the same thing about the watch and said Biden kept talking about his own son.
“When he just kept talking about his son so much it was just — my interest was lost in that. I was more focused on my own son than what happened with him and his son,” Schmitz said. “I’m not trying to insult the president, but it just didn’t seem that appropriate to spend that much time on his own son.”
“I think it was all him trying to say he understands grief,” Schmitz added. “But when you’re the one responsible for ultimately the way things went down, you kind of feel like that person should own it a little bit more. Our son is now gone. Because of a direct decision or game plan — or lack thereof — that he put in place.”
Schmitz recalled that one woman grew emotional and began screaming in Biden’s direction across the tarmac. “She said, ‘I hope you burn in hell! That was my brother!’ ”
Schmitz and Darin Hoover, father of Darin Taylor Hoover Jr, appeared on Sean Hannity’s show last night. They were both so proud of their sons and so dignified in their expressions of sorrow.
Schmitz said initially he wasn’t going to meet with Biden, but then said he thought he owed it to his son to share what he thought with Biden. “It didn’t go well,” he sighed. He said Biden spoke more about his own son than about Jared and “that didn’t sit well with me.”
Taylor Hoover was set to return home on September 15, retire and marry his fiancé. “It’s the absolute worst feeling in the world,” his father said. “Every one of them is a hero, there’s no doubt…They died with their brothers and their sisters right next to them, doing exactly what they all wanted to do, and that is defending this country.” In regard to Biden, Hoover said his family didn’t want him anywhere near them. Hoover said that Biden checked his watch on “every single one of them that came out of that airplane.” “They would release the salute,” he said and then he would look down at his watch, “on every last one.” “Seeing that, and the disrespect. Hearing from his, uh, former leaders. One of his master sergeants said exactly what you just said…that this was avoidable, that they left them over there, they had them over there and let them down.” Hoover said, “This can’t happen, ever again.”
Mark Schmitz commented on it as well. “I actually leaned into my son’s mother’s ear and I said, ‘I swear to God, if he checks his watch one more time…,’” Schmitz remembered. “That was only probably four times in. I couldn’t look at him anymore after that, just considering, especially, the time and why we were there. I found it to be the most disrespectful thing I’ve ever seen.”
Tough to say it any better than did these dignified men.
Hannity was very kind to them and said, truthfully, their sons helped “make the country great,” offering prayers and heartfelt sympathy to them.