Police Week: Memorializing Officers During the Pandemic

NPSF - Op Ed Bill Casey

This week, in fact, was supposed to be 2020’s National Police Week –  scheduled to take place May 12th through the 16th. But due to the coronavirus pandemic, quite a few events have been either shut down or postponed. One of the biggest events every year during National Police week is the honoring of officers who have lost their lives in the line of duty. Perhaps more than ever, police work in the United States is a thankless job, and the deaths of police in the line of duty need our full attention in these trying times. Whatever trouble we face in our lives, officers face almost doubly as they watch over us.

So far this year in 2020, 61 officers have died in the line of duty. The main cause of death is still gunfire. Officers will always go above and beyond to keep us safe. These officers that have died left behind families. A new interesting statistic is that deaths due to illness are starting to rise, which is due mainly to the COVID-19 pandemic. This pandemic is giving officers an extra threat to deal with. Not only do they now have to deal with the threat of themselves not coming home to their families, they now have to worry about getting their family members sick.  

In these times, officers now have to worry about the COVID-19 virus as well. In New York City they have 27 officer deaths due to COVID-19. These officers are still doing their duty to help keep us safe in these difficult times. Officers that die due to this virus are still going above and beyond in these times. They are still going out in the hot spots to no only keep people safe, but to help maintain the social distancing policies. Officers are trying to get the equipment needed to help protect themselves from the virus. Even with all the precautions that one can take, they can still get infected, simply by having a suspect in the back of a squad car. These deaths and not any less heroic than those who get shot in the line of duty. These deaths must be honored as well.

No matter your status- working or at home in quarantine- we ought to reflect on this in the first half of May. In our day-to-day lives, it is easy to forget what blessings and advantages we have, and our officers are easily one of the most precious. They will always continue to go above and beyond the line of duty. Even in times of a pandemic, they will always do their duty to serve and protect. We need to continue to honor and memorialize those officers that get die in the line of duty. Whether they die from gunfire or the COVID-19 virus. Officers will always go above and beyond to keep us safe.

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