Local News

Fallen Officers Remembered During Duke Memorial Service

Posted Updated
Switch to classic wral.com

DURHAM — Six North Carolina law enforcement officers who died in the line of duty last year are being remembered today in special ceremony.

Families, friends and fellow officers filled Duke Chapel for the Peace Officers Memorial service. They came to Durham from across the state to pay their respects to those those who gave the ultimate sacrifice.

Families of six officers who died in the line of duty led a special procession into Duke Chapel earlier today.

The State Highway Patrol lost a member of their family. Trooper Ed Lowry was murdered along I-95 in Cumberland County last September. Sgt. Willy Rose of the N.C. Highway Patrol, was among those in attendance.

Listen toauorReal Audiofile."Everyday we go to work knowing it could be our last. And these two officers on September... they had no indication that that was going to be their last day. They were there to help each other, from different departments, but they were wearing uniforms to serve the people, serve the department and they were there to serve each other."A representative of each of the six North Carolina departments that lost an officer during the past year made up a special color guard.

Cumberland County Sheriff Moose Butler also lost a man, Deputy David Hathcock, in the September I-95 shooting.

Listen toauorReal Audiofile."Well, I reflect back to September of last year when we went out to the scene and we saw those two officers in Cumberland County that was out there and were shot. It was a very sad time but at least they're honoring the memory of these men today along with the other officers who are being recognized."Those being remembered during todays memorial are:

Cumberland County Sheriff's DeputyDavid HathcockNC Highway Patrol TrooperEd LowryRaleigh Detective Paul HaleSharpsburg Police ChiefWayne HathawayMorrisville Police SergeantWilliam GodwinDavidson Police Officer Mark Swaney

One hundred seventy six U.S law enforcement officers died on duty in 1997. Of those, 71 were shot. Fifty officers died in vehicle accidents. Seven were killed during assaults. Nineteen died of natural causes.

Today's ceremony marks the beginning of National Peace Officers Memorialweek.