Craig W. Floyd, Chairman and CEO of the NLEOMF, recently received a letter and special gift from Officer Stephen W. Burres, III of the Irving (TX) Police Department concerning the department's efforts to honor three of their fallen colleagues by supporting the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund.
Dear Mr. Floyd,
My name is Stephen Burres, and I am a police officer for the City of Irving, Texas. I am currently assigned to the Traffic Division, specifically the DWI Unit. I am also a very active member of our Honor Guard, an avid supporter of the NLEOM, and have had the privilege of performing the honor watch at the NLEOM in Washington, D.C., for one of our fallen officers, Officer Andrew Esparza.
Irving is situated between Dallas and Fort Worth, Texas, and is a city of over 250,000 residents. We are also home of the Dallas Cowboys football team and headquarters to several other corporations such as MADD, Zales, and Exxon/Mobil. Our old patch, which is enclosed, was the only patch in the U.S. with a sports franchise logo on it.
In the history of the Irving Police Department, we have suffered the devastating loss of three of our brightest officers: Officer Glenn Homs (7/3/1993), Officer Aubrey Hawkins (12/24/2000), and Officer Andrew Esparza (4/13/2007). Officer Homs was struck and killed by a drunk driver while assisting a motorist who struck a cow that was on the highway; Officer Hawkins was shot and killed by the Texas 7 after they escaped from prison; and Officer Esparza was killed in a patrol car accident while going to assist another officer. These three men paid the ultimate sacrifice for the citizens they served and their chosen profession and should never be forgotten. Thank you for honoring all of America’s fallen law enforcement officers.
Each year the Irving Police Departments’ DWI Unit sells t-shirts with Officer Homs' badge on the front, and we donate our entire profits to Mothers Against Drunk Driving, Victims’ Assistance at the annual “Walk Like MADD” 5K walk.
Officer Esparza’s brother is still currently assigned to our tactical team, and he and his family have set up the Andrew Esparza college fund. They have created a t-shirt with Andrew’s badge on the front, and the profits go to support the college fund.
For the past several years we have not had a charity or organization that we thought would be suitable enough to donate money in memory of Officer Hawkins. This year, the Irving Police Department created a new t-shirt design that has our new patch on the front and the badges of the three fallen officers on the back, along with one of the quotes that is written on the Memorial wall. Texas currently holds Texas Police Week on odd numbered years, and our Honor Guard recently participated in the Police Week events in Austin, Texas, back in May 2009. Officer Esparza’s name was added to the Texas Peace Officers’ Memorial that is located behind the state capitol. This was our t-shirt design for that event, and we will be creating new shirts for Texas Police Week biannually, with all profits going to the NLEOM in Washington, D.C.
Needless to say, our t-shirt sales were a huge success. Enclosed please find a check in the amount of $2,500 that the members of the Irving Police Department would like to donate to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund in memory of all three officers. We hope that the Memorial can put this money to good use to continue the great job that you are doing. We look forward to making this a biannual event.
If there is ever anything that the Irving Police Department can do for you or the NLEOM, please do not hesitate to ask. Again, thank you for your dedication to honor all of America’s fallen officers.
Stephen W. Burres, III #839
Police Officer, Irving Police Department
The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund extends our sincere gratitude to Officer Burres, his colleagues at the Irving Police Department, and the families, friends, and other survivors of Officers Glenn Homs, Aubrey Hawkins, and Andrew Esparza for their wonderful support.