Trump Says SEAL Killed In Yemen ‘Broke A Record’ After Standing Ovation

February 28, 2017 10:19 p.m.

President Donald Trump said Tuesday that a U.S. commando killed during the first counter-terrorism operation of his term was “very happy” after his widow received an extensive standing ovation during Trump’s speech to Congress.

“I think he just broke a record,” Trump said.

Trump said that Chief Special Warfare Operator William “Ryan” Owens died “a warrior and a hero, battling against terrorism and securing our nation.”

Congress gave Carryn Owens, his widow, an extensive standing ovation. Owens attended the address as Trump’s guest.

“And Ryan is looking down, right now, you know that?” Trump said. “And he’s very happy, because I think he just broke a record.”

Owens died Jan. 28 of wounds sustained during a raid on an al-Qaida base in Yemen. Trump traveled to Dover Air Force Base in Delaware in February to join Owens’ family and meet his remains.

During that process, known as “dignified transfer,” Owens’ father said he did not want to meet the President and questioned the decision to launch the raid.

“Why at this time did there have to be this stupid mission when it wasn’t even barely a week into his administration?” he said. “The government owes my son an investigation.”

White House press secretary Sean Spicer said Monday that the raid will undergo three reviews, but said it “was successful.”

NBC News reported Monday, however, citing unnamed senior U.S. officials, that the raid had produced no “actionable intelligence.”

Trump seemed to shirk his own responsibilities as commander in chief earlier on Tuesday, placing the responsibility for the raid on military leaders.

“This was a mission that was started before I got here. This was something they wanted to do,” he said. “And they lost Ryan.”

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