May 15, 2002 - Issue: Vol. 148, No. 62 — Daily Edition107th Congress (2001 - 2002) - 2nd Session
COMMEMORATING MAY 15TH AS PEACE OFFICERS MEMORIAL DAY; Congressional Record Vol. 148, No. 62
(Senate - May 15, 2002)
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[Pages S4382-S4383] From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov] COMMEMORATING MAY 15TH AS PEACE OFFICERS MEMORIAL DAY Mr. CAMPBELL. Mr. President, today more than 15,000 peace officers are expected to gather in Washington, D.C. to join with and honor the families of federal, state, and local officers who were killed in the line of duty. [[Page S4383]] On March 17, I was joined by Senators Leahy, Hatch, Allard, Cantwell, Gregg, Rockefeller, Bingaman, Biden, Bunning, Cochran, Allen, Thomas, and Hutchinson in introducing S. Res. 221, to keep alive in the memory of all Americans the sacrifice and commitment of those law enforcement officers who lost their lives serving their communities. Specifically, this resolution would designate May 15, 2002, as National Peace Officers Memorial Day. These heroes have established for themselves an enviable and enduring reputation for preserving the rights and security of all citizens. This resolution is a fitting tribute for this special and solemn occasion. As a former deputy sheriff, I know first-hand the risks which law enforcement officers face every day on the front lines protecting our communities. Currently, more than 700,000 men and women who serve this nation as our guardians of law and order do so at a great risk. Every year, about 1 in 9 officers is assaulted, 1 in 25 officers is injured, and 1 in 4,400 officers is killed in the line of duty. There are few communities in this country that have not been impacted by the words ``officer down.'' On September 11, 2001, 70 peace officers died at the World Trade Center in New York City as a result of a cowardly act of terrorism. This single act of terrorism resulted in the highest number of peace officers ever killed in a single incident in the history of this country. Thirty-seven of those fallen heroes served with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Police Department; twenty-three were New York City police officers; three worked for the New York Office of Court Administration; five were with the New York Office of Tax Enforcement; one was an FBI special agent; and one was a master special officer with the U.S. Secret Service. Before this event, the greatest loss of law enforcement life in a single incident occurred in 1917, when nine Milwaukee police officers were killed in a bomb blast at their police station. Yet the incredible bravery and selfless sacrifice our officers displayed that day was no different that any other day of the year in communities across America. In 2001, more than 230 federal, state and local law enforcement officers gave their lives in the line of duty. This represents more than a 57 percent increase in police fatalities over the previous year. And, in total, nearly 15,000 men and women have made the supreme sacrifice. We owe all of our police officers a huge debt of gratitude for the invaluable work they do. As we gather on this special day here in Washington, D.C. and nationwide to honor our fallen heroes, we must be ever vigilant and remember those outstanding men and women who continue to put their lives on the line so that we may continue to enjoy the freedom we have. ____________________