Monday, April 4, 2016

United For Blue Marches for Second Year

The grey skies cleared just in time on Saturday, April 2, for the United For Blue march in Washington, DC. The march started at the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Judiciary Square, as more than a hundred people gathered with signs that read “Blue Lives Matter.”

Retired police officer Marcello Muzzatti reminded the crowd about why they had gathered, to remember the sacrifice of law enforcement officers throughout the country. Kelly Wince and Bobbie Padgett, wives of officers, thanked those who appreciated the work that’s done to protect citizens daily.

Memorial Fund President and CEO Craig W. Floyd expressed concern about how officers are portrayed by the public. With sixteen officers shot and killed in the line of duty in 2016 so far, Floyd described a lawlessness in the country.

Being led by a bagpipe band, the marchers started to walk toward the National Mall, on their way to the U.S. Capitol. Additional speakers at the Mall included Matthew Mahl, president of the DC Police Union, and former NFL players Sydney Rice and Clinton Portis.

Thursday, March 3, 2016

263rd Session of FBI National Academy Visits Memorial

As the members of the 263rd Session of the FBI National Academy exited the buses that brought them to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, DC, they made their way to the walls inscribed with the names of more than 20,000 fallen officers.

On the crisp, clear evening of Tuesday, March 1, 2016, they crouched down by the walls to etch names onto paper, their colleagues providing extra light from their smartphones. They came to pay their respects to their fellow officers before graduating from the academy the following week.

Jeff McCormick, of the FBI, invited them to the middle of the Memorial and started the program by reminding them of the ultimate sacrifice the fallen officers made. He was followed by the National Anthem, sung by two officers from the New York City Police Department.

Memorial Fund Chairman and CEO Craig W. Floyd began his remarks by reminding the crowd of the numerous recent killings of police officers, including Ashley Guindon, who was eulogized at a funeral service that afternoon in nearby Prince William County, Virginia.

“There are now 20,538 names inscribed on these memorial walls,” Floyd said. “This coming May [during National Police Week], we’ll be adding approximately 250 more.”

“On average, one law enforcement professional is killed in the line of duty every 60 hours. There are some 57,000 criminal attacks and assaults against law enforcement officers each year in this country. More than 100,000 law enforcement professionals are injured in the line of duty each year. And yet, amazingly, some 900,000 of you go out every day, risking your life and safety for the protection of others. It’s truly remarkable when you consider those statistics.”

The negative image and public scrutiny that has been plaguing law enforcement in recent years was also addressed.

“That’s why it really bothers me, sickens me, really, when you hear some of the anti-cop sentiment that we’ve heard over these last couple of years. For the most part, the average citizen doesn’t have any contact with a law enforcement officer. The Justice Department tells us only 1 out of 5 citizens has any contact at all with a law enforcement officer during the course of a year. Most of those are traffic stops.”

He continued, “You know, we hear so much of the courage of our officers, we don’t hear nearly enough about the compassion that you all display on a daily basis.”

Floyd closed his speech by telling the members about the plans to open the National Law Enforcement Museum in 2018. Financing for the Museum was secured in late-January and construction is expected to start later this month.

“We’ll have two beautiful glass pavilions that will greet our visitors, and then you’ll descend down into the underground Museum. In this historic area we call ‘Judiciary Square,’ there will be 57,000 square-feet of space to tell your story.”

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Minnesota Wild host inaugural law enforcement appreciation night

On Tuesday, February 23, 2016, more than 400 law enforcement officers joined the Minnesota Wild for their inaugural law enforcement appreciation night at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, Minnesota. This special night was dedicated to honoring and recognizing those that make up Minnesota’s thin blue line, thousands of law enforcement officers committed to public safety.

Those who purchased their ticket through the special offer received a National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund hockey puck, a discounted ticket to the game, the opportunity to take a picture on the ice and a special VIP party in the Bud Light Fan Zone.

The Minnesota Wild came up short in a tough 4-1 loss to the New York Islanders.

Due to high demand, the event sold out and the Minnesota Wild have put together another special offer for March 31, when the Wild take on the Ottawa Senators. We would like to thank everyone who attended, with special thanks to Lindsay Weier and the Wild Group Sales Team, the Minnesota Association of Chiefs of Police, the Minnesota FOP, Minnesota Sheriffs Association, Law Enforcement Labor Services of Minnesota and the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association.

Friday, February 26, 2016

Destination Zero Spotlight: Orange County (FL) Sheriff's Office

Source: Wikipedia
The Orange County (FL) Sheriff's Office was the recipient of Destination Zero's 2015 Comprehensive Safety Award, in recognition of their comprehensive, top-down approach to officer safety and wellness.

"Fit Deputy," is a voluntary program providing incentives for deputies to exercise. The program integrates the local business community by allowing deputies to use specific hotel gyms at no cost to ensure that all deputies have access to a workout facility.

The Sheriff’s Office has a permanent Wellness Coordinator and is adding a Wellness Analyst to help gauge the well-being of its officers and address negative trends in an expeditious manner. The Wellness Coordinator not only arranges health fairs and screenings, but provides employees access to counseling and family support.

The agency also provides employees’ lunch boxes/coolers with the agency logo, and promotes materials like the “Tactical Lunch Bag” guide to healthy eating and on-duty nutrition shown below.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Nashville Predators take win in Law Enforcement Appreciation game

On a night dedicated to honoring law enforcement officers at Bridgestone Arena, the Nashville Predators ended a five-game losing streak by beating the Minnesota Wild 3-0 on Saturday, January 16. Before the game, fans interacted with the Davidson County (TN) Sheriff’s Department Mobile Booking and Jail vehicle. The Metro-Nashville (TN) Police Department had their Bomb Disposal Vehicle on hand and the Tennessee Crime Stoppers and Metro Nashville Police Department, along with other law enforcement agencies, had display tables along the concourse featuring career opportunities and interactions with the general public.

The Metro Nashville Police Department Honor Guard presented the colors during the National Anthem. A pre-game ceremony honored Brentwood (TN) Police Department Lieutenant John Wood and Murfreesboro (TN) Police Department Officer Haley Alden, who received the Remington Heroes Award for the heroic service they have provided to their respective communities.

The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund would like to thank AJ Rockwell, Marty Mulford and the Nashville Predators group sales and ticketing department, as well as the Tennessee Association of Chiefs of Police for their assistance in organizing this event.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Memorial Fund Hosts Congressional Reception

Last week, the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund presents its 2015 Excellence in Media Award to FOX News personality Greta Van Susteren and its 2015 Distinguished Service Award to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) at a Congressional reception in the Rayburn House Office Building.

After an introduction from Memorial Fund Chairman and CEO Craig W. Floyd, more than a hundred guests heard from Jackie Rice, Chief Risk & Compliance Officer at Target, the sponsor of this event. The Chairs of the Congressional Law Enforcement Caucus, Congressman Dave Reichert (R-WA) and Congressman Bill Pascrell, Jr. (D-NJ), both also shared remarks.

Ms. Van Susteren has been a steadfast advocate for law enforcement, recently devoting a considerable amount of air time on her weekday show, On The Record, detailing the service and sacrifice of law enforcement officers.

NHTSA has led advancements in transportation safety and has been a long-time partner with the Memorial Fund and law enforcement agencies across the nation in efforts to make roads safer for our officers and everyone. Accepting on their behalf, Administrator Mark R. Rosekind said, "until we get to zero [deaths], not just for everybody but especially for law enforcement, much work is still to be done.”

Each year, the Memorial Fund’s Board of Directors selects award winners who embody leadership and service, and whose contributions have had a positive impact on the law enforcement profession.

Congressional Reception

Monday, December 7, 2015

Detroit Red Wings Honor Michigan’s Recently Fallen Officers

Deep in the tunnels of Joe Louis Arena in Detroit, Michigan, a group of law enforcement officers gathered in preparation for their ceremonial tasks. They practiced their moves and timing as thousands of people sat in their seats, watching players from the Detroit Red Wings and Arizona Coyotes warm up. The occasional errant puck would pound on the glass that separated the officers from the ice, causing everyone to jump and then laugh.

These officers, as well as hundreds more in the stands, came to The Joe on Thursday, December 3, to honor the service and sacrifice of Michigan’s men and women in law enforcement with the 5th Annual Law Enforcement Night. Three in particular were honored: First Lieutenant Arthur Green, of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources; Sergeant Joseph Abdella, of the Detroit (MI) Police Department; and Trooper Chad Wolf, of the Michigan State Police—officers who died in the line of duty this year. An honor guard from the Midland (MI) Police Department followed three officers who represented the departments who had lost an officer this year.

The family of Sergeant Abdella, his wife and their two daughters, stood back from the ice and watched as Karen Newman, who was escorted by Officer Stephen Schneider of the Southfield (MI) Police Department, sang the National Anthem. Sergeant Abdella suffered a heart attack on August 14 while working the Mounted Unit in Detroit. Earlier in the evening, the daughters had received a signed hockey stick and puck, courtesy of a raffle held by the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund and the generosity of Chris Powell, an investigator at Wayne State University. Powell had been named the winner of the hockey puck, signed by a player of the Red Wings, but immediately gave it to Abdella’s daughters, who are fans of the team. Sergeant Abdella was 49 years old.

Trooper Chad Wolf’s family was allowed to sit in the penalty box during pre-game warm-ups. Trooper Wolf, 38, was killed on August 28 after his Michigan State Police motorcycle was struck by a vehicle towing a trailer. He had joined the force in 2008.

First Lieutenant Arthur Green, of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, was also honored at the hockey game. The conservation officer, 58, was killed on August 9 when the small plane he was piloting crashed after hitting a tree near the airport he was expected to land at. He had been on his way to a law enforcement training session.

Those who bought their tickets through the Law Enforcement Night event link were given a commemorative coin in honor of the annual event hosted by the Red Wings. In addition, the first 500 ticket purchasers were allowed onto the ice to take shots on nets after the game, which the hometown team won 5-1. Scores of adults and children waited patiently for this rare treat, to stand on the cold and slippery rink of a professional hockey team and score a goal.

To honor the special evening, coaches of both the Red Wings and Coyotes wore Memorial lapel pins during the game, and police vehicles lined the streets around the arena in downtown Detroit.

About 1,700 tickets were sold for the event, and a portion of proceeds will be donated to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund’s campaign to create the National Law Enforcement Museum in Washington, DC.

There are currently 20 officers from the Detroit (MI) Police Department whose names are engraved on the walls of the National Law Enforcement officers Memorial. The earliest fallen officer from Michigan was Detective Sergeant Daniel J. Coughlin, who died in a shooting-related incident in 1923. Michigan State Police honors 22 officers on the Memorial walls, with the earliest fallen officer being Sergeant Harvey E. Bolen, who died following an injury while on motorcycle patrol, also in 1923. The Michigan Department of Natural Resources currently has only one name on the Memorial, Conservation Officer Edward Carl Starback, who died in a plane crash in 1957 that also killed his two sons.

The Memorial Fund is grateful for the generosity of the Detroit Red Wings for hosting Law Enforcement Night for five years, and for giving local law enforcement and their friends and family the opportunity to enjoy a great evening of hockey. Also, an added extra thanks to the Detroit Red Wings Group Sales and Security teams, ASIS Detroit Chapter, Southfield Police Department, and the Michigan Association of Chiefs Police.

“It’s a great way to raise awareness and funds for the Museum, but also to reflect on the positive work officers do to serve and protect in Michigan and across the country,” said Craig W. Floyd, Chairman & CEO of the Memorial Fund.

Memorial staffers Brad Carlson, Senior Director of Major Gifts, and Jaclyn Barrientes, Communications and Digital Media Manager, were on hand to answer questions about the Memorial and plans for the Museum in Washington, DC. Carlson stressed the importance of building the museum to tell the story of law enforcement in this country, and asked that officers look into opportunities to help make it into a reality, including through donations.

Established in 1984, the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund is a non-profit organization dedicated to telling the story of American law enforcement and making it safer for those who serve. The Memorial Fund maintains the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, DC, which contains the names of 20,538 officers who have died in the line of duty throughout U.S. history. The Memorial Fund is now working to create the National Law Enforcement Museum, which will tell the story of American law enforcement through high-tech, interactive exhibitions, historical artifacts and extensive educational programming. For more information, visit