Today’s Agenda Is Brought To You By…

Jim Burroway

June 22nd, 2016

We Are Orlando

Antonio Davon Brown

Antonio Davon Brown, 29 years old

AntonioDavonBrown-3Tony was one of two Army reservists killed that night at the Pulse gay night club in Orlando. He graduated from Titusville High School in 2004 and from Florida A&M University in Tallahassee in 20008 with a degree in criminal justice. He was a member of ROTC while at FAMU, and joined the U.S. Army after he graduated. He served with the 1st Special Troop Battalion in Fort Riley, Kansas and was deployed to Kuwait from April 2010 to March 2011. He was made captain in March 2012 and was working as a human resources officer in the U.S. Army Reserve. He was also working as a human resources manager at a Lowe’s. One friend described the last time she saw him that fateful night:

AntonioDavonBrown-1His friend Elly Bailey described Brown as a man who “always smiled” and was a “kind, gentle soul.” The two had dinner together Saturday night, and he then left to go out with some other friends. Bailey said she had plans to hang out with him at a pool on Sunday. When she heard about the shootings the next morning, she sent him a text: “I hope you weren’t at the club.”

When she and others didn’t hear from him, they began to fear the worst. The terrible news was confirmed on Monday.

Friends and family described him as down to earth and a kind and gentle soul. “Every now and then, I think of the fun memories and how crazy, humorous Tony was,” his mother said. “And when I get quiet and have nothing to think about, it keeps coming to my mind and it just hurts.”


Angel Luis Candelario-Padro

Angel L. Candelario-Padro, 28 years old

angel-candelario-600x400-ts200Angel was the second of the Army reservists killed that night. He was a former soldier Puerto Rico National Guard. As a member of the Army Reserve, Angel served in the 240th Army Band, based in San Juan. Angels was born in Guánica, Puerto Rico, where he grew up loving music and playing the clarinet. He moved to Chicago, where he was a Zumba instructor, an employee at Old Navy, and a nurse technician at the Illinois Eye Institute. He then to Orlando to get away from the crime. He was set to start a new job at the Florida Retina Institute as an ophthalmic technician the week after he was killed.

Angel Candelario-PadroAngel was at Pulse with his boyfriend that night. After hearing shots, Angel’s boyfriend turned to Angel and asked if he was OK. Angel said he was, and then instantly fell to the ground. Angel’s boyfriend was shot three times in the leg.

Back in Guánica, his uncle told NBC News, “We’re waiting for his body to be brought home. We will welcome him with music.”



Angel and Tony may be eligible for the Purple Heart:

Pentagon Press Secretary Peter Cook said that the Purple Heart for Brown would be considered but the award would “depend on the definition of the event” in which his life was lost, a reference to the criteria for the Purple Heart established by Congress after the Fort Hood, Texas, shootings in 2009. Cook said the decision on the award would be up to the Army.

…Following lobbying by families of the victims, Congress in 2013 added to the criteria for the Purple Heart to make victims of the Fort Hood massacre eligible. At Fort Hood, Nidal Hasan, a U.S. Army major and psychiatrist, fatally shot 13 people and wounded more than 30 others. Hasan was sentenced to death and is being held at the U.S. Disciplinary Barracks at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, during appeals.

Congress in 2015 amended the National Defense Authorization Act to expand eligibility for the Purple Heart to include troops killed in an attack where “the individual or entity was in communication with the foreign terrorist organization before the attack,” and where “the attack was inspired or motivated by the foreign terrorist organization.”

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