Sunday, August 24, 2014

30 Years Later: Saluting a fallen hero and his amazing legacy

Sergeant Christopher Eney
Thirty years ago, on August 24, 1984, Sergeant Christopher Eney was taking part in a Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training exercise when he was accidentally shot and killed by his partner. He was the first line of duty fatality for the US Capitol Police. He was 37 years old and had served with the department for more than 12 years.

In 2009, on the 25th Anniversary of his death, a wreath laying ceremony was conducted at the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, DC, where his name is carved on the First Panel on the eighth line on the Western Wall. 

Sergeant Eney’s wife is also honored on the wall. Vivian Eney Cross was not a police officer but a survivor, and used her experiences to assist her in serving as an advocate for police survivors. When the Memorial opened on October 15, 1991, Sergeant Eney’s name was unveiled and Ms. Eney Cross  was honored with a quote engraved underneath the lion located in the Northwest corner of the Memorial, “It is not how these officers died that made them heroes, it is how they lived.”
The lion located in the Northwest corner of the Memorial
This quote could easily apply to how Chris Eney lived his life. Sergeant Eney served as a medic in the US Army with the Green Berets. He then served with the House Plainclothes Division of the US Capitol Police and the CERT team in Washington DC. He advanced to the position of supervisor and quickly garnered a reputation of being one the best supervisors on the department. Jack DeWolfe, a co-worker of Sergeant Eney’s at the USCP, described Chris was always working tirelessly and “always striv[ing] to get the best out of his team members each day.” He acted as a role model for his superiors and never asked anyone to do something that he wouldn’t do himself.  

USCP Blue Badge Medal
Despite the tragedy of his untimely death, Sergeant Eney’s concern for others and his love of life was carried on by his family. During his funeral, his widow and two daughters were more concerned about his co-workers, which was extremely surprising the co-workers since they were expecting to comfort the family, rather than to be comforted themselves. 

Sergeant Eney was posthumously honored with the USCP Blue Badge Medal in recognition of his courage, dedication, and sacrifice. In addition, the Chamber Training Venue within the Capitol Police’s Practical Applications Center in Cheltenham, MD was named after Sergeant Eney following the 25th anniversary of his death.

As we remember 30th anniversary of Sergeant Eney’s death, it is more important than ever to acknowledge the service and sacrifice that he and all other fallen officers have made. Sergeant Eney’s spirit is carried on today in Vivian Eney Cross’s work as an advocate, and in the memories of his friends and coworkers.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Firearms-related fatalities increased 56% in the first half of the year over 2013

According to our preliminary data, 67 law enforcement officers were killed in the line of duty during the first half of 2014—25 of which were a result of firearms-related incidents.

Craig W. Floyd, the CEO of the Memorial Fund, declared, "The sharp rise in officers killed by gunfire—many in ambush-style attacks—as well as a significant increase in fatal on-duty heart attacks reminds us that much more work needs to be done to improve officer safety and wellness."

And a great deal of that work is being done by the Bureau of Justice Assistance. Through the VALOR program, BJA has trained over 15,000 officers across the country to recognize and respond to ambush-style attacks and other intentional assaults on officers. These free nationwide trainings have helped prepare officers for developing dangers in the field.

Learn more and find upcoming trainings at

In partnership with the Memorial Fund, the VALOR program issued the following training recommendations based on our preliminary data.

Training Recommendations

Ambush attacks on officers continue to be a leading cause of felonious death among officers and these attacks can occur at any time. Routine activities such as completing reports, mapping an address to a call or talking to a complainant can turn deadly if officers are not constantly practicing situational awareness.  Be on guard at all times.

As the most visible sign of government, law enforcement officers are often targeted by anti-government groups. Review your training on the tactics used by these extremists groups so you can remain vigilant and stay safe.

Investigating suspicious persons and circumstances was the leading cause of firearms-related fatalities in the first half of this year.  When responding to these types of calls make sure you have proper back-up and never take a suspicious activity call casually.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Cleveland Indians host 3rd Law Enforcement Appreciation Night

Cleveland Police Color Guard presented the Colors during the 
National Anthem and pre-game ceremony.
On Tuesday, August 5th the Cleveland Indians and the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund held a special Law Enforcement Appreciation Night at Progressive Field as the Indians completed a two-game series with the Cincinnati Reds. Unfortunately the Indians lost 9-2 at the game, but it was still a great night of baseball.

The event, in its third season at Progressive Field, was dedicated to honoring the service and sacrifice of all law enforcement and correctional officers and their families.

NLEOMF ambassador, Alex Behnen, a commander with the
Columbus Ohio Division of Police throws out the ceremonial first pitch.
“It was great to be back in Cleveland to celebrate our third annual Law Enforcement Appreciation Night with the Tribe," said Craig W. Floyd, Chairman and CEO of the Memorial Fund. “Coming together at Progressive Field to honor our nation’s law enforcement officers, while enjoying a fun night of baseball, was a great way to raise awareness and funds for the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund. I’m thankful to the Tribe for welcoming us once again.”

A special Thanks to Ohio Association of Chiefs Police, Ohio Fraternal Order of Police‎ and Cleveland Police Historical Society for supporting the event, along with Cleveland Indians account representative Matt Gay and NLEOMF Ambassadors Alex, Behnen, Bill Swank, Brent Clark for organizing the event.

Sgt. Michael Maughmer of the Ohio State Highway Patrol poses with his father 
on the field just prior to singing the National Anthem.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

FBI National Academy holds service at Memorial

On Wednesday, July 30 at 7pm session 257 of the FBI National Academy held a memorial service at the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial. The FBI National Academy is a professional course of study for U.S. and international law enforcement leaders that serves to improve the administration of justice in police departments and agencies at home and abroad and to raise law enforcement standards, knowledge, and cooperation worldwide.

Two hundred and eleven students came to the Memorial to pay their respects to fallen officers from their departments. During the Ceremony, Memorial Fund CEO Craig Floyd and Supervisory Senior Resident Agent Michael Harrigan, head of the National Academy, made brief remarks, then a roll call of officers from the student's departments was read. Lastly, the FBI National Academy students retook their law enforcement oath.

Memorial Fund Chairman & CEO Craig Floyd gives a speech to the FBI National Academy

Friday, July 25, 2014

US Mint Unveils Marshals Museum Coin Designs to benefit Memorial Fund

This past Wednesday, Attorney General Eric Holder, U.S. Marshals Service Director Stacia Hylton and U.S. Mint Deputy Director Richard Peterson unveiled the designs of the three commemorative coins that will be sold next year to raise money for a planned $50 million U.S. Marshals Museum in western Arkansas.

The coins honor the contribution of the US Marshals Service and will begin selling in January, ahead of the planned 2017 opening of the new museum. Proceeds from the coins will benefit the museum, the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund and several other charities.

The U.S. Mint will produce up to 100,000 $5 gold coins, a half-million $1 silver coins and 750,000 half-dollar clad coins.

The $5 coin memorializes marshals who have died in the line of service. The $1 coin honors the agency's frontier history, with the back of the coin showing a U.S. Marshal with a poster that says "Wanted in Ft. Smith." The half-dollar coin focuses on the agency's diverse missions and features depictions of current and past U.S. Marshals.

Memorial Fund Chairman and CEO Craig Floyd was in attendance at the event.

Left to right: Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association Foundation president Jonathan Adler and Memorial Fund Chairman & CEO Craig Floyd attend coin unveiling event.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Ambassador & Guardian Spotlight: Michael Gainey

The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund enjoys the support of a special group of volunteers: Law Enforcement Ambassadors and Guardians. Law Enforcement Ambassadors are active and retired law enforcement officers from city, state, federal and military law enforcement agencies, while Law Enforcement Guardians are volunteers who support and honor law enforcement but are not sworn officers, allowing citizens, family members and corporate supporters to work closely with the Memorial Fund in achieving our goals.

Sergeant Michael Gainey has worked in law enforcement for the last 12 years. Over those years, the majority of his time has been with the Mint Hill Police Department in North Carolina. Back in 2013, Sgt. Gainey had an idea to hold a local 5K race during National Police Week to raise awareness of their local memorial as well as the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, DC.

In just two months, Sgt. Gainey got the support of Chief Tim Ledford and the Mint Hill Police Department to pull off the first Soles2Remember 5K in May 2013 which raised more than $6,000 for the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial. Sgt. Gainey and his colleagues came out on their day off to help close streets and bring family members to participate. Along with the support of Chief Ledford and command staff he was able to plan the 2nd annual event, which occurred during National Police Week 2014. This year’s event raised over $7,000 and had more than 130 participants. Sgt. Gainey’s goal for the event is to have it grow to become a family affair in the community of Mint Hill and include other agencies around Charlotte-Mecklenburg.

When Sgt. Gainey started the planning process, he contacted us and we encouraged him to become one of our Law Enforcement Ambassadors. He has been doing a great job spreading awareness about our efforts and the work of his agency. Thank you Ambassador Michael Gainey for all your support!

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

NASCAR Salutes Law Enforcement at Dover International Speedway®

Sunday was a great day for the races!

The past Sunday, June 1st, the Memorial Fund once again teamed up with Dover International Speedway® for our 6th Annual Law Enforcement Appreciation Day. A great group of law enforcement officers, their families and supporters participated in our pre-race events which helped to raise more than $5,000 for the National Law Enforcement Museum Campaign.

Pre-race activities included raffle prizes from the Dover, bagpipes and drums, and a Nascar® driver appearance! Big raffle prizes at the tent including a ride in the Grand Marshall’s care at the start of the race and a Monster Mile NASCAR Driving School with 10 Laps and U-Drive experience in a NASCAR Race Car on the track. Through this raffle we raised an additional $756.00 in raffle sales and donations. Also before the race, two Delaware State Patrol cars and two Dover Police Department cars did a ceremonial lap.

Ambre, Millie and Tristan Taylor with
NASCAR drivers Martin and Ryan Truex
Our special guests for this event were Mrs. Ambre Taylor and her children Tristan and Millie. Ambre’s husband Dino Taylor was a Baltimore City Police Officer who was killed in a traffic crash in 2012. Ambre and the kids had a great time and were very appreciative.

NASCAR Drivers Martin and Ryan Truex visited the Memorial Fund's hospitality tent before the race and spent some one on one time with the Taylor family. They also did a questions and answers session with the folks in the tent.

Dover presented a ceremonial check to the Memorial Fund for $5,192 and announced during the pre-race program that they have raised over $50,000 for the Memorial Fund and Museum during their 6 Law Enforcement Appreciation Days!

It was a great day for racing, the Memorial Fund and fans. Thank you to all those who participated and helped us make this event such a great success!