News Stories

Remembering those who Protect and Serve

Published May 7, 2015

“In valor there is hope.” —Tacitus

In 1962, President Kennedy and Congress established the first National Peace Officers Memorial Day – May 15 – and declared the week in which it falls as National Police Week. This year, from May 10 to 16, communities throughout the country recognize National Police Week as a time to pay tribute to those law enforcement officers who serve and protect others, and honor those who have lost their lives in the line of duty. On May 15, police officers will wear black mourning bands across their shields and badges to honor those officers who have given their lives in the line of duty. Police Memorial Day is one of only two days that all U.S. flags are required by law to be flown at half staff – the other is Memorial Day.

Members of the law enforcement family travel to the nation’s capital from throughout the United States to take part in National Police Week events. Thousands of people will be visiting Washington, D.C. May 10-16 to observe National Police Week. Included in this group are almost 3,000 surviving family members and co-workers of America’s fallen law enforcement heroes.

Survivors are the family members, friends, and co-workers who are left behind when a law enforcement officer dies in the line of duty. This year, 127 officers who died in the line of duty in 2014 will be honored during National Police Week at the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial’s annual Candlelight Vigil and the Fraternal Order of Police and its Auxiliary’s National Peace Officers’ Memorial Service.

National Police Week provides all Americans an opportunity to recognize the incredible contributions of military and civilian law enforcement professionals.