The wife of a St. Louis County police officer who was shot and killed in the line of duty last year has been invited as a guest of U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis and U.S. Rep. Ann Wagner to attend President Donald Trump’s first joint session address to Congress on Tuesday.
Elizabeth Snyder is the widow of Godfrey native Blake Snyder, who was shot and killed Oct. 6, 2016 while responding to a call in south St. Louis County. Trenton Forster, 18, of St. Louis, has been charged with first-degree murder in connection with Snyder’s death.
Elizabeth Snyder, in a Facebook post, said, “I’m completely honored and cannot wait to hear what our president has in store, especially for law enforcement.”
Elizabeth Snyder will be accompanied by her brother, Justin Sparks, a St. Louis County officer who delivered the eulogy at Blake Snyder’s funeral. Trump’s address is scheduled for 8 p.m. Tuesday.
Davis is a Republican from Taylorville. Wagner is a Republican from Missouri.
“Officer Snyder gave his life while serving and protecting our communities,” Davis said in a news release. “We owe a great deal of gratitude to all of our police officers and their families who provide an invaluable support system to our first responders. I’m honored to have Elizabeth and Justin as our guests to next week’s address to share their stories and advocate on behalf of our law enforcement.”
He added, “In today’s environment, bridging the gap that has formed in some communities between police officers and those they serve can be incredibly challenging, but it starts by understanding the human faces behind the badges. This is certainly one of our goals of honoring the life of Officer Snyder and his family who has dedicated their lives to public service.”
Wagner said, “Officer Snyder was a true hero, who selflessly put his own life on the line to protect our families, while leaving behind his own. It is an honor to host Elizabeth and Justin in Washington for this historic event, as their strength, conviction and unwavering support of our first responders is nothing short of heroic.”
Wagner added, “It is because of stories like theirs — positivity in the wake of tragedy — that will help close the divide between our communities and law enforcement. I am grateful for Elizabeth’s and Justin’s commitment to public service as we move forward as a nation under the leadership of President Trump.”