Reporting Jessica Kartalija
BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A Johns Hopkins University graduate–killed while working as a diplomat for the U.S. State Department–is laid to rest.
Jessica Kartalija has the details.
Anne Smedinghoff, 25, was delivering books to schoolchildren when she was killed in Afghanistan.
A funeral service was held for Smedinghoff in her hometown of River Forest, Illinois–ten miles outside of Chicago–where white ribbons are tied in her honor.
“The suddenness of her death and the contributions she had already made to the world make our profound feelings of loss today even more acute,” said one person.
A graduate of Johns Hopkins and an officer with the State Department, Smedinghoff was delivering textbooks to students in Afghanistan when a suicide bomber struck.
Secretary of State John Kerry met Smedinghoff just two weeks before her death while visiting Afghanistan. After learning she died, Kerry traveled to Chicago to meet with her family.
“A brave American who was determined to brighten the light of learning through books,” said Kerry.
“It meant a lot to us to have the opportunity to visit personally with the secretary, to hear his personal recollections of Anne from his recent visit in Kabul, and to tell him a little more about who Anne was and what she did and what she was like,” said Tom Smedinghoff, victim’s father.
Johns Hopkins University issued this statement regarding Smedinghoff’s death:
“To Anne’s parents and her many friends–especially her Johns Hopkins friends–may they all be consoled by their memories of her vibrant life.”
Other U.S. State Department representatives attended Smedinghoff’s funeral.
“We thank you all for your support and your love and your help as we work through this loss,” her father said.
Anne Smedinghoff was the first U.S. officer to be killed overseas while on duty since the attacks in Benghazi last year.
Four other Americans were killed in the same attack.