Nationals, Cubs, Royals, Tigers, Rockies, Indians, Rays… OH MY!

This summer is turning out to be a hot one and so are the Law Enforcement Nights at Major League Baseball games across the country.
We kicked off May with National Police Week in Washington, DC, where the Washington Nationals honored law enforcement on May 15 as the Nationals took on the New York Yankees. Despite the rain, it was still a fun night out for all who attended. The National Law Enforcement Museum, which will open in  October, received the Washington Nationals Spirit Award. Our thanks to Kevin Nawrocki and the Nationals for supporting and honoring law enforcement during National Police Week.

The honoring of law enforcement continued in the “Windy City” on May 23 as the Chicago Cubs hosted their annual law enforcement appreciation night at Wrigley Field. The Cubs battled the Cleveland Indians and fell short in a 1-0 score. Each fan that purchased the law enforcement package received a Cubs law enforcement tumbler. Prior to the game, members of the Chicago (IL) Police Department Honor Guard presented the colors and performed the national anthem while law enforcement officers and their families were honored throughout the game. Our thanks to Patrick Anhut and Jason Tuton of the Chicago Cubs Groups Sales Team for another first-class event.

May finished strong as the Kansas City Royals honored law enforcement on May 29 as they took on the Minnesota Twins and won in a final score of 2-1. It was also a win for law enforcement as prior to the game Les Kerr, a well-known native of Kansas and a law enforcement professional, threw out the ceremonial first pitch (it was a strike). Kansas City (MO) Police Officer Dustin Dierenfeldt sang the national anthem as the Olathe (KS) Police Department Honor Guard presented the colors. Each fan in attendance that bought the special law enforcement ticket package received a commemorative challenge coin. Our thanks to Scott Barthelmass, Ariel Peralta and the Royals for supporting local law enforcement.

The winning kept going on May 30 as National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund staff traveled to “Motor City” as the Detroit Tigers battled the Los Angeles Angels and won in a final score of 6-1. Comerica Park was again showing its support for law enforcement as fans were treated to a police car display in front of the ballpark from a variety of Michigan police agencies. During the pre-game ceremony, retired U.S. Border Patrol Agent Mark Hall was recognized for his 33 years of service to the Border Patrol and its Detroit Station. Mark was presented with a letter and gift on behalf of Memorial Fund CEO Craig Floyd.

Throwing out a fast ball for the ceremonial first pitch was Police Unity Tour Executive Director Harry Phillips. The Downriver Honor Guard, which is a part of the Michigan SMART Honor Guard, presented the colors. Fans also witnessed a Blackhawk helicopter flyover by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Detroit Air Station. Each fan that purchased the special ticket package received a law enforcement challenge coin and Thin Blue Line USA bracelet. During the game, fans were treated to a special video about StandWith Honor, a law enforcement membership at the National Law Enforcement Museum. At the game, a group of Police Unity Tour riders from the Capital City Chapter caught up with Harry Phillips and Memorial Fund staff. Due to the popularity and high demand of this event, a second date has been added for Sunday August 12. Tickets are on sale now at www.tigers.com/law2. Big shout-out and salute to Dan Foley, Mark Hall, Brent Clark, Kris Grogan, Jerry Connors, Betsy Bouillon and the Tigers staff for making this event one of the premier group events at Comerica Park.

We got a chance to catch our breath in June, which turned out to be a good month as the Memorial Fund paid a visit to the Colorado Rockies on June 10 and the Cleveland Indians on June 23. The Denver (CO) Police Department Honor Guard presented colors at the Rockies game. Our thanks to the Bill Swank organization and the Cleveland State University Honor Guard for presenting the colors at Progressive Field during the Indians Law Enforcement Night.

Summer is heating up and so are the sporting events. The July 4th week kicked off in Tampa Florida as the Rays hosted Law Enforcement Day at Tropicana Field. The Lakeland (FL) Police Honor Guard made the 60-mile trip south to St. Petersburg and presented the colors. The Rays took on the 2017 World Series Houston Astros and came out on top in a final 3-2 win!

The Rays’ special ticket package included a Rays baseball cap, free parking, the Rays Touch Tank and access to the Ted Williams Museum. Thanks to Yolanda Fernandez, the St. Petersburg (FL) Police Department, Jeanne Drury, Kim Couts and the Tampa Bay Rays for the hospitality.

Still want more baseball? Want to work on your 7th inning stretch? For the latest schedule of sporting events  visit  www.LawMemorial.org/Sports. Upcoming teams include the Seattle Mariners, Texas Rangers, New York Yankees, New York Mets, St. Louis Cardinals, Miami Marlins, Boston Red Sox, Minnesota Twins and Milwaukee Brewers.

2018 Law Enforcement Appreciation events kick off

On January 4, the 2018 Law Enforcement Appreciation events were kicked off in the Twin
Cities with the Minnesota Wild. Despite the cold weather,
the Wild beat the Buffalo Sabres in a final score of 6-2 as we honored
Minnesota law enforcement. Our thanks to Jeff Beahen and the Minnesota Law
Enforcement Memorial Association, the Minnesota Federal Law Enforcement
Officers Association and the Minnesota Chiefs of Police.

From Minnesota we traveled down to
Tampa, Fla., as the Lightning took on the Calgary Flames. The
Lightning lost a tough game with a final score of 5-1. Area law
enforcement officers were honored at the start of the game on the video board.
The Lightning had police agencies and an interactive display on the
plaza prior to the game, as well as a police/fire honor guard. Law enforcement
and their families were treated to great hospitality. Our thanks to Cindy
Roberts and the Tampa Bay “COPS” Chapter for their assistance in the
event, as well as Sam Reiner of the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Ohio law enforcement honored at NHL game

Ohio law enforcement honored at NHL game
Ohio law enforcement honored at NHL game

November was a busy month as the NHL hosted several Law Enforcement Appreciation Nights in honor of the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund. On November 17 the Columbus Blue Jackets hosted their annual First Responders/Law Enforcement Night which was a huge success.

A sold-out crowd watched the Blue Jackets beat the visiting New York Rangers with a final score of 2-0.

The Columbus (OH) Division of Police Mounted, Motorcycle & Freeway Units were on hand, as well as the Ohio State Highway Patrol and the Columbus Division of Fire, to greet arriving fans.

The Columbus Division of Police Motorcycle and Freeway Units provided a VIP escort to the family of Kirkersville (OH) Police Chief Eric DiSario from their home to the game. They were hosted by the Blue Jackets at a pregame experience on the ice, and after the game they were invited in the Blue Jackets locker room by player Cam Atkinson.

Ohio law enforcement honored at NHL gameSeveral families of first responders were able to greet players as they entered the ice and children of local law enforcement officers were able to ride the Zamboni throughout the evening.

During the first intermission the Columbus Division of Police Chief Kim Jacobs’ patrol cruiser was driven around the ice by CPD Officer of the Month Anthony L. Johnson.

Interactive stations were located throughout the arena for the fans to visit, along with K9 demonstrations by Columbus Airport Police Officer David Knepper and his K9 partner.

The Franklin County (OH) Sheriff’s Office Bomb Squad brought their robot to explain how they use their special equipment.

Special thanks to the Columbus Blue Jackets organization, especially Malinda Smith, Dani Knell and Cam Atkinson. Our thanks to the Ohio Association of Chiefs of Police, Columbus Police Department, Ohio State Highway Patrol and the Ohio Fraternal Order of Police for their continued support of this great event.

MLB’s Indians, Brewers Honor Law Enforcement

The Cleveland Indians hosted their annual Law Enforcement Night on August 5 against the New York Yankees. It was an exciting night supporting and honoring law enforcement despite the Indians coming up short in a 2-1 loss before a sold-out crowd at Progressive Field.

Prior to the game, Columbus (OH) Police Department Commander Robert Meader threw out the ceremonial first pitch. Commander Meader is a native of Cleveland and as a teenager worked in the concessions department with the Indians. His brother-in-law was a Columbus police officer who was killed in the line of duty. During the pre-game ceremony Ohio State Highway Patrol Sergeant Michael Maughmer performed the national anthem as the Wellington (OH) Police Department Honor Guard presented the colors. Fans were also treated to a special video on the National Law Enforcement Museum’s Stand With Honor program www.StandWithHonor.us.

A special thanks to the Ohio Association of Chiefs of Police, the Cleveland Indians and the Ohio Fraternal Order of Police for assisting in this annual event.

Milwaukee Brewers

On August 11 in Wisconsin, the Milwaukee Brewers hosted their annual Law Enforcement Appreciation Night. This is the seventh year the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund has teamed up with the Brewers. More than 2,000 law enforcement officers from local, state and federal agencies, along with their families and friends, came out for the event. Brewer fans were treated to a special pre-game ceremony honoring Wisconsin’s finest, including a helicopter flyover performed by the U.S. Coast Guard and the Wisconsin Honor Guard Association on the field presenting the colors, as well as the Memorial Fund flag.

The Memorial Fund Officer of the Month award recipients for March 2017 officers Andy Hopfensperger and Ryan Bula of the Antigo (WI) Police Department threw out the ceremonial first pitch.

A special thanks to the Wisconsin Chiefs of Police Association, Wisconsin Chapter of the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association, Wisconsin State Troopers Association, Milwaukee Police Association, Maggie Aliota and the Milwaukee Brewers Foundation for sponsoring the special challenge coins that were given away that night.

If you missed these events, check out www.LawMemorial.org/Sports for the latest law enforcement events happening across the country.

Law Enforcement Honored By World Series Champions

On Wednesday, May 17, the 2016 World Series Champions Chicago Cubs honored area law enforcement during their annual Law Enforcement Night at Wrigley Field. More than 1,550 law enforcement officers, friends, families and supporters came out to watch the Cubs take on the Cincinnati Reds. The Cubs won with a final score of 7-5.

Everyone that bought this special offer received a Chicago Cubs Beanie Cap. Not only was it Law Enforcement Night at Wrigley, but it was also National Police Week. The Chicago Cubs posted a special marquee message honoring law enforcement. During the pre-game ceremonies at Wrigley Field, the Chicago Police Department Honor Guard presented the colors.

Cubs

Our thanks to Samuel Schlechter and the Chicago Cubs Groups Sales Team, along with James Reynolds and the Security Team, for their assistance in making this a great event. For other Major League Baseball Law Enforcement Night events, visit: www.LawMemorial.org/Sports.

Red Sox honor Boston-area law enforcement

Monday, May 1, was a great night in Red Sox Nation as the Boston Red Sox honored Massachusetts-area law enforcement departments and officers, as well as the surrounding New England area, during the 6th annual Law Enforcement Night at Fenway Park.

The evening’s recognition and remembrance of law enforcement started off with Pauline Carter-Wells of the Cambridge (MA) Police Department singing the national anthem as the Boston University (MA) Police Department Honor Guard presented the colors. National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund Director of Law Enforcement Relations Matt Palardy threw out the ceremonial first pitch, and was joined by Memorial Fund Board Vice Chair Jon Adler, the New England COPS Chapter and U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary John F. Kelly.

Children of fallen officer families had the opportunity to say “Play Ball” at home plate before the game. Families of the officers who were killed in the line of duty in 2016, and who will be remembered and honored during the 2017 National Police Week, were also honored on field before the game.

This special night also gave Memorial Fund the opportunity to promote the Stand With Honor (www.StandWithHonor.us) program to a diverse group of law enforcement leaders and associations. 

The Boston Red Sox ended up falling short to the Baltimore Orioles in an exciting game in a final score of 5-2.

We would like to thank the Carl Grider and the Boston Red Sox Group Sales Team, Boston Red Sox Security Team, Boston Police Department, New England COPS Chapter, New England Association Chiefs of Police and the Massachusetts Police Association for their support of this event. For the latest schedule of law enforcement events with Major League Baseball Teams visit www.LawMemorial.org/sports.

Fallen Officer Names Buried at Museum Construction Site

Braving temperatures in the teens, Memorial Fund President and CEO Craig W. Floyd climbed down 65 feet into the construction site of the National Law Enforcement Museum. Strapped to his back as he climbed down several ladders on this December day, was a wooden box containing rubbings of names of fallen officers from the Memorial across the street.
The rubbings were part of a project from National Police Week in 2014. Visitors to the Memorial were asked to make extra rubbings of their loved one’s names so they could be placed into a capsule and embedded into the Museum underneath the area which will contain the Museum’s Hall of Remembrance. Hundreds of rubbings were collected and they waited for the day when they could be forever sealed into the foundation of the building designed to tell their profession’s story. That day came on December 15, 2016.

Mr. Floyd carefully delivered the capsule to its final resting place. He gently placed the wooden box into the ground, and shoveled in the dirt on top. Concrete will soon be poured over the site as construction for the Museum continues.

The Museum is expected to be completed  in 2018.

NHL’s Blue Jackets Honor First Responders and Families


It was a great night on November 18 in downtown Columbus as the surrounding community and the State of Ohio poured into the Nationwide Arena for the annual Columbus Blue Jackets First Responders Night. Not only did this night honor Ohio First Responders, it also honored and recognized the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund. More than $4,000 were raised for the first National Law Enforcement Museum.


The Blue Jackets hosted the New York Rangers and won in an exciting game with a final score of 4-2. Prior to the start of the game, the Blue Jackets observed a moment of remembrance for Columbus (OH) Police Officer Steve Smith and Hilliard (OH) Police Officer Sean Johnson as their families were recognized on the ice.

Mounted police on horses welcomed fans outside Nationwide Arena while concourse attractions included a K-9 unit, a bomb squad robot, a CPR training station and a dress-up station where kids were able to try on police, firefighter and bomb squad gear. In addition, fans were treated to pre-game and first intermission performances by the Columbus Police & Fire Pipes & Drums, a group of active-duty or retired Columbus police officers and firefighters.

Columbus Division of Police officer Alex Behnen and Gary Leister were given a personalized jersey from the team in a ceremony at intermission. They were honored for discovering two historical line of duty deaths that were not known or recognized locally or in Washingon, DC, at the national Memorial.

After the game Hilliard and Columbus police officers and their families were invited down on the ice for group photos. Blue Jackets’ Cam Atkinson met the kids and parents in the locker room.

Our thanks to Malinda Smyth, the Columbus Blue Jackets and Nationwide Arena for saluting First Responders and the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund. Special thanks to the Ohio Association of Chiefs of Police, Ohio Fraternal Order of Police, City of Columbus Police Department and Bill Swank for their efforts in assisting with this event.

Honoring Our Past While Looking Toward the Future

I will always remember Vivian Eney, among many, who illustrated the importance of building the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial. She impressed upon me just how much mere notes or other expressions of condolence mean to the loved ones of officers who make the ultimate sacrifice. I realized then how meaningful a lasting tribute—a national monument with their loved one’s name inscribed—would be to a survivor.
On October 15, 1991, we dedicated the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, DC, with nearly 12,600 names of fallen heroes engraved on the marble walls. Among those names was Vivian’s late husband, Christopher Eney, a sergeant with the United States Capitol Police, who was killed in a training accident in August 1984. 

Vivian was among a handful of leaders who helped turn the dream of this national monument into a reality. She was the deciding voice in favor of the lion statues, beautifully sculpted by Ray Kaskey, that adorn the entrances of the Memorial. And, of course, it is her poignant quote on the Memorial walls that has explained to millions of visitors the essence of this monument: “It is not how these officers died that made them heroes, it is how they lived.”

Amongst many thousands of families whose loved one’s name is engraved on the Memorial walls, Vivian, and her family, remain vital to our mission more than 30 years after her husband’s death. “When a grave doesn’t look new anymore, when the grass has grown over it, this will be the place to come and see the names—to touch the names,” Vivian shared at a special wreathlaying in commemoration of Christopher’s death in 2009. 

The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund has held countless ceremonies and events that raise the public awareness of law enforcement in our country—especially those who have fallen in the line of duty. From Candlelight Vigils to intimate wreathlayings to 5K run and walk events, the Memorial is open and accessible to all every day of the year. As Vivian so eloquently shared, it is a place where survivors, colleagues, and friends can visit and remember their officer. When they visit, they feel uplifted knowing that their officer is honored next to thousands more who made the same sacrifice. Most of all, visitors share that they are comforted knowing they’re loved one is forever honored.

Yet, as we celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial, our work to fulfill our mission does not end there. In fact, that’s only the start. We also aspire to protect the officers who put on the uniform every day by promoting safety and wellness. We partner with the Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Assistance and Community Oriented Policing Services divisions, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and others to raise awareness of the everyday dangers in an officer’s life, while providing information and resources designed to improve their safety as they conduct their work to keep the citizens in our communities safe. We issue Law Enforcement Fatalities Reports to identify trends and key indicators of specific areas where the law enforcement community can focus to improve officer safety. And we notify subscribers to our Recently Fallen Alerts when we learn of officer fatalities across the country.

And, now, construction is well underway on the National Law Enforcement Museum that will finally and fully tell the story of American law enforcement. Museum will open in 2018, and when it does, millions of visitors will learn what it’s like to be a law enforcement officer. The Museum will tell the story of American law enforcement through high-tech interactive exhibits, a comprehensive collection of artifacts, extensive resources for research, and diverse educational programming. And the Museum’s public programming will help bridge the gap between law enforcement and the communities they serve by giving visitors a better understanding of a day in the life of an officer.

High-tech exhibits in the Museum will educate and entertain— underscoring the necessity for citizens to step forward and do their part to uphold the rule of law and preserve the constitutional rights of the citizens of our country.

The Memorial serves as a powerful reminder that duty runs deep and that the service and sacrifice peace officers, and their families, have made for the safety and protection of our citizenry is important. As we bring forth the National Law Enforcement Museum, the Memorial will forever remain a focal point of the “campus for law enforcement” seated in Washington, DC’s Judiciary Square.

As we commemorate the Memorial’s 25th anniversary this month, we remember the now 20,789 names engraved on the sacred walls. Each one was a hero who sacrificed their life for our safety. We will continue to honor them and their families. And the Museum will inspire future generations of peace officers who will take up the mantle of law enforcement.

Help us continue the mission of telling the story of American Law Enforcement. Your donation will help us maintain the Memorial walls and finish construction on the Museum. Support the Memorial in the spirit of #GivingTuesday: www.LawMemorial.org/GivingTuesday

– Craig W. Floyd, President
and CEO of the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund