Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Law Enforcement Ambassador Spotlight: Chris and Erin Shoppmeyer

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 their goals.

This month we recognize two Ambassadors for their work to honor America’s law enforcement professionals. Chris Shoppmeyer and his daughter Erin love the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund and have dedicated many hours to supporting and attending our Law Enforcement Appreciation events. Chris is a federal law enforcement agent who works for National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) as a Conservation Agent, and Erin works for the National Park Service as a Ranger at the Statue of Liberty.

Father and daughter, Chris and Erin Shoppmeyer

Chris and Erin worked closely with the Memorial Fund staff to set up a meeting with Major League Baseball’s Boston Red Sox. As a result of their efforts, the Red Sox hosted a great Law Enforcement Appreciation Night on August 2nd that honored all of New England’s fallen officers and had over 700 law enforcement officers and supporters in attendance. On August 7, Chris and Erin joined a group of Ambassadors and the Memorial Fund’s Director of Development & Law Enforcement Relations, John Shanks, at Citi Field as the Law Enforcement Ambassador program was honored by the New York Mets with the Mets Spirit Award.

A special thank you goes out to Chris and Erin Shoppmeyer, a true law enforcement family and exceptional supporters of the Memorial Fund.

To learn how you, too, can become a volunteer or help set up a Law Enforcement Appreciation event in your city, contact Tyler Gately at or 202-737-8539.

Friday, August 10, 2012

NY Mets Present Spirit Award to Memorial Fund Ambassadors & Guardians

In a pre-game ceremony on August 7, 2012, the New York Mets invited members of the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund’s Ambassador & Guardian Program onto the field to receive the Mets Spirit Award.  Memorial Fund Director of Development & Law Enforcement Relations, John Shanks, accepted the award on behalf of all Law Enforcement Ambassadors & Guardians, volunteer leaders who work tirelessly to honor and support the law enforcement community. During the presentation, John Shanks was joined by Memorial Fund Law Enforcement Relations Associate, Tyler Gately, as well as Memorial Fund Ambassadors Brent Clark, Stuart and Lisa Levine, Chris and Erin Shoppmeyer, Pat Kissane, and Greg Williams.

The August 7th match-up between the NY Mets and Miami Marlins was designated as Law Enforcement Appreciation Night, and more than 500 law enforcement officers and their families were in attendance.  The New York Police Department Honor Guard presented the colors at the opening ceremony.

The Memorial Fund relies on volunteer leaders who help organize and promote Law Enforcement Appreciation Events like this one—many at sporting venues throughout America. A full schedule of Law Enforcement Appreciation Events is available at

A special thanks to Brent Clark, a Memorial Fund Ambassador from New York, who was instrumental in working with the NY Mets to organize this event, along with Stuart and Lisa Levine, who brought a large group from their company, The Zellman Group. Stuart also arranged for recording artist Range to perform his single “Lay it Down,” a tribute to fallen law enforcement officers. Range is generously donating the full proceeds of his song to the Memorial Fund. It is available to download in the iTunes store.

To learn more about how you can become a Law Enforcement Ambassador or Guardian, visit or contact Tyler Gately, Law Enforcement Relations Associate, at or 202.737.8539.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Boston Red Sox Salute Law Enforcement at Fenway Park

For two straight games—on August 1st v. the Detroit Tigers and on August 2nd v. the Minnesota Twins—the Boston Red Sox honored law enforcement officers from around the region with Law Enforcement Appreciation Nights at Fenway Park.

Before the August 2nd game, law enforcement officers—including Boston Police Deputy Superintendent William Gross, surviving family members of officers killed in the line of duty, and representatives from the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund—stepped onto the field for a pre-game ceremony, to honor the following officers killed in 2012 from the New England region:
  • Police Officer Kevin Ambrose, Springfield (MA) Police Department
  • Police Chief Michael P. Maloney, Greenland (NH) Police Department
  • Deputy Sheriff Ryan Tvelia, Norfolk County (MA) Sheriff's Office
  • Police Officer Jose Torres, Westfield (MA) Police Department
  • Sergeant Maxwell Dorley, Providence (RI) Police Department
  • Detective Andrew F. Faggio, New Haven (CT) Police Department
The Memorial Fund's July 1998 Officer of the Month, Officer Tommy Griffiths of the Boston (MA) Police Department, and Memorial Fund Law Enforcement Ambassador, Gates (NY) Police Officer Joshua Bowman, were in attendance at the game.

Law Enforcement Appreciation sporting events are designed to honor law enforcement officers and pay tribute to those who have died in the line of duty. A full schedule of events is available at

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Honoring Penn Hills (PA) Police Officer Michael J. Crawshaw

Officer Michael J. Crawshaw
The following blog was written by Joseph E Derouin, friend of Officer Michael J. Crawshaw.

On December 6th, 2009, Penn Hills (PA) Police Officer Michael J. Crawshaw, tragically lost his life responding to a “shots fired” call in a suburb just east of Pittsburgh. When arriving at the scene, the gunman cowardly fired into the windshield of Mike’s radio car before Mike had a chance to exit.  Mike was ambushed with no opportunity to defend himself.

Mike was one of my closest friends and has been so since we were kids.  Mike was a very special young man.  He was an incredible son, grandson, brother, uncle and friend.  He loved life and the people around him even more.  He was dependable, caring and honest. 

Mike was everything that we should respect in a human being. 

Needless to say, Mike’s death was devastating.  As a friend, not only did I have to deal with the grief of losing someone I cared about so deeply but I also had to witness his family suffer through unimaginable pain as a result of this tragedy.  A family that absolutely did not deserve the fate they were handed that cold December night.

The day after Mike’s funeral, all of Mike’s closest childhood friends met at Mike’s grave and decided to do whatever it takes to make sure Mike’s memory and, equally as important, Mike’s family never be forgotten.  One of our first ideas was to petition Shaler Township, the town we grew up in, to rename a park or a field after Mike.  We chose a baseball field located in the heart of the town and presented our idea to the Shaler Township Board of Commissioners.  Unanimously, they agreed and Michael J. Crawshaw Memorial Field became the new name of the field we played baseball on as children.  Furthermore, we created the Michael J. Crawshaw Memorial Fund.  The objective of the fund was fund the construction of a permanent memorial in Mike’s name at the baseball field.

After two years of fundraising and with the support of hundreds of volunteers and donors, our dream came true on April 14th, 2012.  With the support of Shaler Township, we unveiled a large memorial that stands behind the players benches at the field.  Carved into the front of the memorial is three pictures of Mike; one of him in his little league uniform, one in his high football uniform and a picture of Mike as an adult.  The wording on the front speaks to why Mike deserves to always be remembered for his act of bravery and the back is a reminder that Mike is always with us, no matter where our lives shall take us.
The Memorial Fund will continue on in Mike’s name, with proceeds helping to create better and safer fields for kids to play on as well as continuing to provide support to various youth initiatives throughout our hometown. The last two years have been difficult to say the least but it has also allowed me to see the truly best in people.  People who have made major sacrifices to help the idea of a memorial become reality.  The memorial not only stands for a great young man who we lost way too early, it also symbolizes the love and passion for him that was shared by so many people.

More information about the Officer Michael J. Crawshaw Memorial Fund is available at:

The Dangers Law Enforcement Officers Face on the Roadways

On average, 72 officers died from traffic-related incidents(automobile crashes, motorcycle crashes, struck while outside their vehicles, & train crashes) each year during 2000-2010. But law enforcement officers face a variety of other safety hazards while on our roads and highways.

Recently, CNN featured a dramatic video taken from the dashboard cam of Fortville (IN) Officer Matt Fox highlighting this potential danger. Officer Fox had noticed a vehicle with a missing taillight and was conducting a routine traffic stop when suddenly the suspect flees, with Officer Fox in pursuit. The video shows the suspect suddenly stop, immediately exit his vehicle and deliver several shots directly at Officer Fox's vehicle.

Officer Fox was struck in the hand, forehead, and chest. He was recently released from the Indianapolis Hospital and is in rehabilitation, with a long road to recovery ahead of him.
Officer Fox is lucky to have survived. Tragically, in 2011, there were 11 officers shot and killed—including two officers that were ambushed in unprovoked attacks—while driving or conducting routine traffic stops, in similar situations as Officer Fox.

More information about Officer Fox’s condition and the recovery is available at:

This blog is part of a series highlighting the risks law enforcement officers face on the road, as part of  an innovative partnership  with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to promote law enforcement officer safety on the roadways.