US ambassador attends security guard's funeral
ANKARA -Anatolia News Agency
Ricciardone and his wife hugged the officer's mother, Gülşen. DAILY NEWS photo, Selahattin SÖNMEZ
U.S. Ambassador to Turkey Francis Ricciardone attended the funeral of Mustafa Akarsu yesterday, the security officer killed in the suicide attack that targeted the embassy building in Ankara.
Ricciardone was accompanied by his wife, Marie Ricciardone, Ankara Governor Alaaddin Yüksel and other embassy officials. Ricciardone and his wife, who wore a pin with a picture of the 46-year-old security officer during the funeral processions, expressed their condolences to the slain officer's mother, Gülşen Akarsu, and other members of his family.
"He had many awards and never failed at his job. He loved his duty. He died at his duty as a hero," said Yasemin Akarsu, the slain officer's wife. Akarsu is also survived by his 18-year-old son, Sami, and 15-year-old daughter, Hilal.
Ricciardone visited the bereaved family immediately following the attack on Feb. 1. "Mustafa was a great hero. God knows how many would have died if he hadn't been there," Ricciardone told reporters in Turkish after the visit.