‘The heroic act of the forty gendarmes who came from the town of Campina in the morning of December 23, 1989 to carry out the mission according to the order they received and their sacrifice for the defence of Otopeni International Airport must be and must remain a vivid example of courage and sacrifice’, the Romanian Gendarmerie chief Lt. Gen. Olimpiodor A ntonescu told the ceremony.
He stressed the death of those heroes will forever stay written ‘in the undying pages with the gendarmes’ heroic deeds done at all the moments of Romania’s history’.
Wreaths were laid by the President’s Office, Parliament, the Government, the Revolutionaries’ Associations, the victims’ families and other state institutions and nongovernmental organisations.
The Guard of Honour of the Romanian Gendarmerie marched in the end of the ceremony. Twenty years ago, on December 23, 1989 the gendarmes who were then students of the Non- Commissioned Officers School in the southern Campina town were asked to come and back the defence of Otopeni Airport. When they reached the airport early in the day, they fired a warning gunshot to announce they had arrived, but unfortunately they were believed to be hostile forces and they were killed in gunfire.