Indiana Rep. Walorski’s work entitled “Mission” during the funeral

GRANGER, Indiana — Political leaders on Thursday honored Republican US Rep. Jackie Walorski of Indiana as a staunch defender of her beliefs during a funeral after she and three other people died in a freeway accident last week.

Scores of members of Congress were among several hundred mourners for the nearly two-hour service at Granger Community Church near Walorski’s home in north Indiana.

Republican House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy spoke about Walorski’s work as a Christian missionary in Romania with her husband, as director of a local humanist society, and as a television news reporter before entering politics.

“To tell you the truth, Jackie never had a job. She always had a purpose and a mission,” McCarthy said.

Walorski, 58, was in an SUV with two members of her convention staff on Aug. 3 when, for unknown reasons, it crossed the median of a northern Indiana freeway and collided with an oncoming vehicle, according to the Elkhart County Sheriff’s Office.

Walorski, her 27-year-old associate Zachery Potts of Mishawaka, who was driving, and her 28-year-old communications director Emma Thomson of Washington, D.C. all died, as did the woman driving the other vehicle.

Pallbearers carry the coffin of the late Congressman Jackie Walorski during her funeral in Southlawn Cemetery.
Pallbearers carry the coffin of the late Congressman Jackie Walorski during her funeral in Southlawn Cemetery.
Chloe Trofatter/South Bend Tribune/AP
Jackie Walorski
Walorsksi was in a vehicle that collided with oncoming traffic on August 3.
J Scott Applewhite/AP

Potts was Walorski’s district manager and Republican chairman of St. Joseph County in northern Indiana.

Walorski was first elected to Congress in 2012 after six years in the state legislature and is seeking re-election in the fixed Republican district this year.

Much of Walorski’s funeral emphasized her Christian faith, as her husband Dean Swihart, an elementary school music teacher, played the saxophone with other musicians while they performed several hymns.

Republican Representative Ann Wagner of Missouri recalled becoming friends with Walorski after they first joined Congress at the same time and lived in the same apartment building in Washington for many years.

Mourners watch as the coffin of late MP Jackie Walorski is carried to Granger Community Church for a funeral service.
The 58-year-old US representative was buried on Thursday.
Chloe Trofatter/South Bend Tribune/AP
Mourners attend the memorial service for the late Congresswoman Jackie Walorski
Walorsksi was in a vehicle that collided with oncoming traffic on August 3.
Chloe Trofatter/South Bend Tribune/AP

Wagner choked back tears as she called Walorski “one of the best.”

“Jackie was a no-nonsense woman of strength and intense integrity, get it done and move it or lose it,” Wagner said.

Walorski was active in Congress on agricultural and food policy and often worked across the aisle on these issues. As co-chair of the House Hunger Caucus, she sponsored legislation with Democrats to revive a Nixon-era White House event on food insecurity.

Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb said Walorski loves the country and is proud of her homeland.

“One thing about Jackie, her stride was always sure, her stride was always forward,” Holcomb said. “She was upbeat and enthusiastic and, yes, energetic.”

https://nypost.com/2022/08/11/indiana-rep-walorskis-work-called-mission-during-funeral/ Indiana Rep. Walorski’s work entitled “Mission” during the funeral

JACLYN DIAZ

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