France Honors Hero Cop Who Died After Swapping Himself for Hostage

The story of his heroism swept across the world—and now France has bestowed its highest honor on the police officer who died after swapping himself for a hostage during a terror attack last week. Lt. Col. Arnaud Beltrame, 44, was one of four victims of a shooting spree in Trèbes, in the south of France, last Friday—the attacker, who was also killed, said he was representing the Islamic State terror group. In moving scenes in Paris, flags were flown at half staff, a minute’s silence was held, and President Emmanuel Macron led a national memorial service where Beltrame was awarded France’s highest accolade, the Legion d’Honneur. Macron said the police officer “fought until the end and never gave up” and deserved “the respect and admiration of the whole nation.” Following the ceremony, Beltrame’s coffin will travel back to Carcassone, near Trèbes, for his funeral.

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