For our second day in DC, we woke up a bit early, because we had to make it to the hotel for a lunch meeting with some of the surviving families. I had the opportunity to spend time with my sister, nephew, niece, and other family members. I was also able to meet some amazing people. Here are some pictures that I caught during lunch.
Later that day we headed back to the National Police Memorial, where they would hold the 23rd annual candlelight vigil. We were taken by bus to the memorial site. When we exited the bus, there were police officers from all different agencies on each side of us, formed in a perfect line, welcoming us to the memorial. We were then ushered to our seats. After eating locally, the presentation began. It was amazing to hear the story of Sheriff Cornelius Hogeboom. Sheriff Hogeboom was a law enforcement officer in Hudson, New York. Upon serving a writ of ejection, Sheriff Hogeboom was shot and killed, becoming the first LEO in the United States (known to this date) to be killed in the line of duty. Sheriff Hogeboom, EOW October 22nd, 1791. Police historians are assigned to research stories like Sheriff Hogeboom’s, in order to properly honor those officers at the memorial.
We were seated in the front of the arena, and when I turned around, I was in complete awe. There were thousands of people standing behind us, holding up a candle to honor the officers who had given the ultimate sacrifice. My heart was full of pride at seeing so many pay tribute to our fallen heroes. With the media and different news outlets constantly questioning the actions and integrity of police officers, it was inspiring to witness thousands of people who support law enforcement officers. To see all of those people there made me understand that the majority of people really do appreciate and respect the men and women in blue.
Unfortunately I did not have my camera equipment with me because of the questionable weather, but no fear, because I had my trusty iPhone with Camera+. Here were some images from the vigil:
When I heard Officer Coleman’s name called it once again sent chills through my body, as I am sure it did to the rest of our family. Even after a year, it is difficult to believe that he passed away. Tom will always be remembered and remains close to our hearts.