Default 0A video clip of the ceremony.
In 1962, JFK declared May 15 Peace Officers Memorial Day. This year, the Richmond Hill Police Department had a remembrance ceremony at the Veterans’ Memorial Monument at J.F. Gregory Park.
The numerous flags of the monument served as a backdrop for those spoke about the holiday.
"We feel very strongly about our fallen officers and they are thought of heavily by this police force on this memorial week," Police Chief Billy Reynolds said. "This ceremony is just a small token of our appreciation."
Everyone stood as Judge Sam Davis took the podium and read off the names of all the Georgia law enforcement officers who died in the line of duty last year. New Beginnings Church Pastor Steve Lane led the prayer and recited a poem about the dangers of police work. Davis read a poem about officers paying the ultimate price while in the line of duty.
"This is an opportunity not just to remember fallen police officers, but also those in fire fighting, military and other forms of public service," Reynolds said. "It is because of them that we enjoy being safe in our communities, and we owe them a debt of gratitude on this day."
Here’s an excerpt from the poem "Just Reward" by Mary Wheat, read by Davis at the ceremony:
"I never took a penny that wasn’t mine to keep though I worked a lot of overtime when the bills got so steep. I never passed by a cry for help, though I sometimes shook with fear. And sometimes, please forgive me, I wept an unmanly tear … There was silence all around, where the Saints respectfully stood. As the officer waited quiet for the judgment, bad or good. You’ve carried your burdens well. Come walk a beat on Heaven Street. You’ve done your time in Hell."
See video at bryancountynews.net.