“The problem is that too many Americans take our correctional officers for granted. Because they work primarily outside of the public view, most citizens simply never give much thought to the more than 500,000 men and women working so valiantly inside our prisons and jails—the incredible dangers they face, the sacrifices they endure, and the contributions they make to the safety of our communities and our nation.”
Today, those brave correctional officers were honored at the 20th Annual Corrections Officers Wreath Laying Ceremony and Honor Guard Competition, hosted by the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments at the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund on the final day of National Correctional Employees Week.
Craig W. Floyd, Chairman & CEO of the Memorial Fund, was the guest speaker at the ceremony, along with Paul Quander, Deputy Mayor for Public Safety of the District of Columbia. Mr. Floyd read a roll call of corrections officers who died in the performance of duty, while officers marched to the center medallion and placed a single rose. A bell chimed after each name and at the end of the roll call, white doves were released into the skies above the Memorial as a symbolic tribute to the fallen heroes.
The names of 571 correctional officers now grace the walls of the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial. These courageous heroes are forever remembered, and their light continues to shine through their memory, and through the selfless men and women who continue to serve each day.