Memorial ceremony honors law enforcement officers
Law enforcement agencies held memorial ceremonies last week that will be followed by more commemoration this holiday weekend.
Washington County invited law enforcement officials from all across the region who joined Sheriff Bill Hutton to mark the 19th annual Washington County Law Enforcement Memorial Ceremony on Wednesday, May 19. The event honored hundreds of fallen officers killed in the line of duty.
Hutton said 176 names were read at last year's ceremony. They were the names of police and community corrections officers killed nationwide in 2011.
"This was a significant increase and a frightening trend," he said. "One is too many."
The number dropped to 120 in 2012, however, it's still not low enough to meet the "below 100" goal.
The campaign aims to reduce that number drastically, Hutton said, and he hopes the trend continues to decline beyond that in the future.
"We want to change that below-100 (figure) to below 90, to below 80 to below 70," he said.
The event drew members of the public as well as county elected officials and staff.
Woodbury's law enforcement contingent was led by Public Safety Director Lee Vague. Men and women in uniform gathered in front of the steps of the Historic Courthouse as they prayed, listened to the names of those who died last year and saluted the flag.
Woodbury will hold a Memorial Day ceremony at 11 a.m. Monday, May 27 at the Lions Veterans Memorial near City Hall.