Washington, D.C. – Chair Raúl M. Grijalva (D-Ariz.) issued the following statement following last night’s passage of the Alexander Lofgran Veterans in Parks Act as a part of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2022, which permanently waives national park fees for veterans and gold star families.
The bill, originally introduced by Rep. Mariannette Miller-Meeks (R-Iowa), was named after Alexander Lofgren, a Wounded Warrior Fellow and former aide to Chair Grijalva in his Tucson, Ariz., district office. Lofgren died in a tragic hiking accident in Death Valley earlier this year.
“Congress honored the memory of my friend and colleague Alex yesterday by making our national parks and public lands free and accessible to veterans and families who have lost loved ones in the line of duty,” Grijalva said. “As a combat veteran, Alex saw our national parks as a place of healing and tranquility and hoped to share that experience with his brothers and sisters in arms. When this bill becomes law, we’ll help him fulfill that desire. Though we can never fully repay the debt we owe to our veterans and gold star families, I hope this small gesture helps ease their burden.”