Every May 15, in honor of National Peace Officers Memorial Day, law enforcement agencies nationwide join hands to honor those brave men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice of giving their life in the line of duty. This year, the Mono County Sheriff’s Department reached out its hand and hosted the first memorial ceremony in Mono County on the lawn in front of the Bridgeport courthouse, to honor the fallen law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty in the Eastern Sierra.
On average, one law enforcement officer is killed in the line of duty somewhere in the United States every 53 hours, Sheriff Richard C. Scholl stated on Tuesday. Since the first known in line of duty death in 1791, more than 19,000 U.S. law enforcement officers have made the ultimate sacrifice. Former President George Bush said, “It takes a special kind of person to serve in law enforcement. Most people run from danger. Law enforcement officers run towards it.”
“We are here today to honor those brave men and women who went to work one day and never returned home,” said Sheriff Scholl. “Unlike most other careers, the brave men and women who embark upon a life in law enforcement know fully that they might one day be called upon to lay down their lives in the call of duty.”
Deputies and police officers representing Mono County Sheriff’s Department; Inyo County Sheriff’s Department; Mammoth Lakes Police Department; Bishop Police Department; California Highway Patrol; California Department of Fish and Game; Mountain Warfare Training Center Police Department; and Mono County Paramedics stood together to honor all the lives lost in the Eastern Sierra. A moment of silence was given to those fallen Eastern Sierra officers: Sheriff N.F. Scott (1862, MCSO); Sheriff Thomas Passmore (1878, ICSO); Sheriff William Moore (1879, ICSO); Deputy William Edwards (1907, MCSO); Constable Walter Reed (1912, ICSO); Sheriff James Dolan (1915; MCSO); Deputy Lemoyne Hazard (1925, ICSO); Inspector James Randolph Jr. (1979, ICSO); Police Officer Richard Perkins (2001, Bishop PD); and Officer Paul Pino (2003, CHP).
As each of these officers’ names were read aloud, a bell was rung in their memory.
“As we leave here today, have in your thoughts the men and women who go to work each day as the protectors of society never knowing if that day may be their last,” stated Sheriff Scholl as the ceremony concluded with the laying of a wreath on the courthouse lawn to honor those law enforcement officers of the Eastern Sierra who have made the ultimate sacrifice of giving their life in the line of duty. –MCSD/LK