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Honoring Service and Sacrifice, County Council recognizes Police Week

Summary

“It’s fitting to remember our local law enforcement officers on a week that remembers those who dedicate their lives for the protection of others.”

Story

05_14_policeweek_web
King County Sheriff Mitzi Johanknecht and members of her command staff join Councilmembers after the County Council declared May 13-19 Police Week in King County

The Metropolitan King County Council today joined communities across the United States in recognition of National Police Week. The annual celebration—celebrated this year from May 13-19—recognizes and honors those law enforcement officers who made the ultimate sacrifice, as well as the family members, friends and fellow officers they left behind.

“Today we join jurisdictions across our nation in recognizing the service and sacrifice of those in law enforcement,” said Councilmember Reagan Dunn. “18 King County Sheriff’s Officers have paid the ultimate sacrifice. Their names are forever memorialized as you enter the King County Courthouse 3rd Avenue entrance. It’s fitting to remember our local law enforcement officers on a week that remembers those who dedicate their lives for the protection of others.”

This year, the names of 360 officers killed in the line of duty are being added to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, DC. These 360 officers include 129 officers who were killed during 2017, plus 231 officers who died in previous years but whose stories of sacrifice had been lost to history until now.

Two members of the law enforcement community in Washington State will be added to the National Memorial. Kalama Police Department Chief of Police Randall Scott Gibson passed away on January 10, 2017 and Mason County Chief Deputy Fred Hickson who passed away on June 29, 1944.

There are approximately 900,000 law enforcement officers currently in the U.S. Since the first recorded death in 1791, over 20,000 law enforcement officers—representing cities, counties, states, and federal agencies in the United States—have died in the line of duty.

4,000 men and women are in law enforcement in King County, serving 39 cities, three Tribal Governments, the University of Washington, and nearly 250,000 residents living in unincorporated communities.

In 1853, King County Deputy Wesley Cherry was the first King County law officer to lose their life in the line of duty. Since Cherry, 18 King County Sheriff’s officers have fallen in the line of duty. The King County Sheriff’s Office Memorial, located in the King County Courthouse, honors their sacrifice. This month, two more names were added to the memorial, Special Deputy George H. Yeaman, Jr. and Special Deputy John Frederick Mines. Both fell in the line of duty while conducting an aerial search on July 19, 1946.

“National Police Week is an opportunity for communities across the country to recognize the incredible bravery and sacrifice of those who put themselves in harm’s way to protect others,” said King County Sheriff Mitzi Johanknecht. “I recently had the great honor of adding two special deputies, who lost their lives in 1946 while searching for a crashed plane, to the King County Sheriff’s Office Memorial Wall. I’m proud of our Sheriff’s Officers and am glad this recognition celebrates their hard work.”

Each year, Washington State adds names of officers who lost their lives in the line of duty to the Washington State Law Enforcement Memorial in Olympia. In 2018 three names were added to that memorial: Pierce County Sheriff’s Deputy Daniel McCartney who passed away on January 8, 2018, Kent Police Officer Derrick W. Focht who passed away on April 7, 2017, and Mason County Sheriff’s Deputy Fred Hickson who passed away on June 29, 1944.


 

 PROCLAMATION

WHEREAS, since 1962, May 15 has been recognized as National Peace Officers Memorial day in recognition of those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice while protecting others in the line of duty, and the week in which this day falls is named National Police Week, which is May 14-20 this year; and

WHEREAS, approximately 900,000 law enforcement officers serve in communities across the nation, and so far this year, 53 brave officers have fallen in the line of duty; and

WHEREAS, since the first recorded law enforcement death in King County of Deputy Wesley Cherry in 1853, 99 county-based officers have made the ultimate sacrifice, with 18 of these being members of the King County Sheriff’s Office and a King County Sheriff K-9 Officer; and

WHEREAS, the King County Sheriff’s Office Memorial, located in the King County Courthouse, honors their sacrifice; and

WHEREAS, this month, two more names were added to the memorial, Special Deputy George H. Yeaman, Jr. and Special Deputy John Frederick Mines, both of whom fell in the line of duty while conducting an aerial search on July 19, 1946; and

WHEREAS, 360 new names of fallen heroes are being added to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial this spring, including 129 officers killed in 2017 and 231 officers killed in previous years; and

WHEREAS, on May 13, 2018, the names of Randall Scott Gibson of Kalama Police Department who passed away on January 10, 2017, and Fred Hickson of the Mason County Police Department who passed away on June 29, 1944, were added to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial; and

WHEREAS Pierce County Sheriff’s Deputy Daniel McCartney who passed away on January 8, 2018, Kent Police Officer Derrick W. Focht who passed away on April 7, 2017, and Mason County Sheriff’s Deputy Fred Hickson who passed away on June 29, 1944, have been honored and their names forever memorialized on the Washington State Law Enforcement Memorial;

NOW, THEREFORE, we, the Metropolitan King County Council, proclaim May 13-19, 2018, as

 POLICE WEEK

in King County and salute the service of law enforcement officers in our community and across the nation.

DATED this fourteenth day of May, 2018.


Contact the Council
Main phone:
206-477-1000
TTY/TDD:
206-296-1024
Email:
council@kingcounty.gov