JACKSONVILLE, Texas (KETK) – The City of Jacksonville said thank you to law enforcement on Wednesday in celebration of National Police Week.
A ceremony was held at Love’s Lookout at 9 a.m. The event was open to the public.
Roscoe Lee was a police officer who lost his life in service.
“It’s like a dark hole still,” said Mary Story, Lee’s daughter.
Randy Zimmerman was also an officer. Both him and Lee were honored by their local community for their sacrifice.
“Randy was a very religious person. He knew what he was doing could cost him his life, but he did it anyway,” said Peggy Zimmerman, his wife.
Jacksonville Police Chief Joe Williams said that last year the event was held at Lake Jacksonville with COVID-19 restrictions. This time, there was roughly 150 people in attendance.
“I kind of anticipated about 50 people, but we had 150 people. The mix of people that we had. We had different law enforcement agencies. We had ordinary citizens. We had survivor families, pretty proud day,” Williams said.
An event was also organized in Marshall at Memorial City Hall. It honored fallen officers across Texas and started at noon.
The ceremonies are being held after the murder of two West Texas deputies late Monday night.
Concho County Sheriff’s Office on Tuesday afternoon said the deputies who were killed are Samuel Leonard and Sgt. Stephen Jones.
28-year-old Jeffrey Nicholas has been booked on two charges of capital murder. Under Texas law, the charge is automatically applied when a law enforcement officer is killed. An Eden city employee was also critically injured.
Earlier this year, DPS trooper Chad Walker was killed after pulling over to help a disabled motorist. His killer later died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
National Police Week was established by President John F. Kennedy in 1962. It was initially set as a one-day tribute on May 15, but has since grown to a full week-long event
In the United States, roughly 900,000 men and women are sworn peace officers, the highest number ever recorded in the country’s history.
The first recorded police death was in 1791 and since then, more than 24,000 officers have been killed in the line of duty.
If you are unable to make it to one of the events, Marshall PD is livestreaming their ceremony on Facebook.