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Emotional Wounds Are Still Fresh 1 Year After Raleigh Officer's Death

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RALEIGH — Raleigh police say the shooting death of Detective Paul Hale seems like it happened just yesterday, but Saturday marks the first anniversary of his death. With a new trial starting for Hale's admitted killer next month, the emotional wounds are still fresh.

July 11, 1997 -- it was a sea of blue as Raleigh police officers descended upon Lenoir Street where Detective Paul Hale had been shot.

Ask any Raleigh police officer, they all remember where they were a year ago when Hale was gunned down. But on the anniversary of his death, they want to remember him.

To commemorate the day, Raleigh police are holding a golf tournament in Hale's memory.

"He was just the type of person that everyone wanted to be," says Detective Russ Hepps. "He was a dedicated and devoted father and husband, he was a great friend. We owe it to him to remember him everyday, but especially this day."

"It will be a roller coaster for us," says Lt. M.R. Teem. "I think one minute we'll be happy to be together as a family and the next minute we'll be thinking about Paul. I think the emotions will be high tomorrow, I really do.

Hale's widow, Connie, plans to spend the day in seclusion, but she supports the event and thanks those who have stood by her.

The police department, the rank and file officers have been wonderful to me," says Connie Hale. "MY family is fabulous, always has been and they've been right there for me."

The event is expected to raise a small amount of money. Part of the proceeds will be donated to Special Olympics.

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Amanda Lamb, Reporter
Robert Meikle, Photographer
MJ Ainsley, Web Editor

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