by Karly Sacco
According to an email sent out to the Benedictine University community, the tree will remain up until January 31 in honor of the 100 plus law enforcement officers who lost their lives in the line of duty during 2014.
“We are here today to honor the fallen officers of the year of 2014,” said Sergeant Lloyd Popp at Benedictine University.
“Lately we have been inundated with negative press with the Ferguson shooting, and we want to remind people that our police forces nationwide sacrifice daily, some giving the ultimate sacrifice so that the quality of people’s lives can be the best that they can be.”
The Benedictine police plan on turning this event into a tradition for years to come.
“These people gave their lives for their communities, and for their families so we decided we would like to start an annual event to honor those who have fallen,” said Popp.
The main focus of the event was the holiday tree with featured pictures of the fallen officers. They hope that the numbers don’t rise of those who have fallen.
“We have the officers’ pictures, with the police office they are from and how they gave their life for their communities and the people that they serve,” said Popp.
“We got a 4-foot tree, and unfortunately I feel that it may be too small, I think we probably need an 8 foot tree, but hopefully in the future we will only need a 2-foot tree.”
A few BenU officers that attended the event helped out and involved with placing a memory on the tree.
“So far this year over 100 officers have lost their lives in the line of duty, and each officer here today is placing one of the cards with the fallen officers pictures on the holiday tree, while reading a memory of those we have lost and how they gave their life,” said Popp.
This event gave the BenU police department time to reflect on the work that their fellow officers do every single day.
“During a holiday season, intended for the rejoice of our bounty and for the comfort with family and friends, this is a symbol of remembrance for those who selflessly gave the ultimate sacrifice for their community, given for what we have and for what are gratefully for, demonstrates the human sacrifice for those who serve,” said Chief of Police Michael Salatino at Benedictine University.