National Police Week

Published on May 01, 2022

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In 1962, President John F. Kennedy signed a joint resolution of Congress making the week which falls on May 15 National Police Week.  This is the week where America recognizes the service and sacrifice of all United States Law Enforcement Officers.  

This year 619 new names will be inscribed on the wall at the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, D.C. One of those names will be our own, Patrick W. Madison. Pat’s name, and all the other names will never be lost to history. 

Of the 619 new names, 472 were officers who perished in 2021, 169 more officers than the previous year. The additional 147 new names added this year were officers who had died before 2021 but were not previously submitted for inscription on the wall. The family and friends of these fallen heroes will always be able to visit the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial to reflect on their sacrifice and service to their community.   

Law enforcement has gone through a tough time over the last several years. Violent crime is surging across the United States and police officers are not immune from this troubling trend. According to the National Fraternal Order of Police, as of April 1st, 2022, 101 officers have been shot in the line of duty, a 46% increase from 2021 and a 63% increase from 2020. Of those shot, 17 of them died. There have been 19 ambush-style attacks on law enforcement officers this year, up 36% from 2021. Policing has always been dangerous and my measure of respect for those who willingly accept that risk, for the protection of others, has grown over the years.  

I have been making the trip to our nation’s capital for Police Week for over thirty years. As a young officer, watching the families of our fallen officers during the ceremonies at the candlelight vigil and the Capital, I prayed that God would spare my parents the pain of losing their son. As I grew older, I prayed that my wife and children would be spared that pain. As a young officer, I remember thinking as I look at the wall of the memorial where the names of the fallen are engraved, “there is a lot of room left on that wall”. I had hoped that the wall would never fill up. This year they began the process to add more sections of granite to the wall of memorial. I pray that this expansion will be made in vain.  

Events like the National Police Week are important. It is important to recognize the heroes who made the ultimate sacrifice in the service of their community. It is important for us to gather together to support each other and the families of our fallen. It is a great reminder that we are all in this together, to stand next to each other and know that we have each other’s back. 

As the Chief of Police for the Coral Springs Police Department, I would like to thank all the men and women, throughout our nation, for wearing the badge and doing the job.  I would like to thank those who are joining our ranks at a time when many in our society shuns those who protect and serve.  I would like to thank the brave men and women of our department who come to work daily, ready to lay down their lives to protect others. I would also like to thank all the civilian employees who work with us, helping us achieve our mission. I would like to thank our families who love and support us and lastly, I want to thank the citizens of our city who support our department each and every day! 

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