Officers and staff from the Dalton Police Department welcomed visitors on Monday afternoon to observe Peace Officers Memorial Day. The department hosted a brief ceremony on the grounds of the Police Services Center by the Chief William Hannah Police Memorial.
The ceremony was opened by Captain Tom Phillips, who introduced members of the DPD Honor Guard who presented the colors and led the Pledge of Allegiance. After a welcoming invocation from Chaplain James Eades, Assistant Chief Cliff Cason welcomed the gathering. Department spokesman Bruce Frazier read a proclamation from Dalton Mayor Dennis Mock declaring Police Week in Dalton, and then read the names of the eight Georgia law enforcement officers who gave their lives in the line of duty since the last Peace Officers Memorial Day. They are:
* Officer Timothy Kevin Smith, Eastman Police Department, End of Watch August 13, 2016
* Sergeant Patrick Michael Sondron, Peach County Sheriff’s Office, End of Watch November 6, 2016
* Deputy Daryl Wayne Smallwood, Peach County Sheriff’s Office, End of Watch November 8, 2016
* Deputy Justin Scott White, Newton County Sheriff’s Office, End of Watch November 15, 2016
* Officer Nicholas Ryan Smarr, Americus Police Department, End of Watch December 7, 2016
* Officer Jody Carl Smith, Georgia Southwestern State University Public Safety, End of Watch December 8, 2016
* Sergeant Gregory Michael Meagher, Richmond County Sheriff’s Office, End of Watch February 5, 2017
* Deputy Michael Butler, Lowndes County Sheriff’s Office, End of Watch February 25, 2017
The DPD Honor Guard then laid a wreath at the Chief Hannah Police Memorial and Chaplain Eades gave a benediction to conclude the ceremony.
May 15th was declared to be National Peace Officers Memorial Day by President John F. Kennedy in 1962. President Kennedy further declared that the week in which Peace Officers Memorial Day falls to be National Police Week. This year, Police Week runs from Sunday, May 14th through Saturday, May 20th.
Below: Images from the Peace Officers Memorial Day ceremony (to see more pictures from the ceremony, click here to visit a gallery on the DPD Facebook page)