Annual memorial honoring fallen officers takes place in wake of deputy's death

Memorial service honoring fallen officers

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - The annual memorial to honor fallen officers in Arkansas took place on a somber day as another officer's life was taken in Yell County.

The 36th Annual State Peace Memorial Day Service honored the sacrifice officers make every day. President John F. Kennedy established Peace Officers Memorial Day through a resolution in 1962.

After rounds were fired and before the ceremony began on the capitol lawn, Captain Phillip Pevehouse acknowledged the death of fellow officer Lieutenant Kevin Mainhart. The officer was shot and killed by James Bowden during a traffic stop.

"May we be in prayer for what's going on in Yell County,” said Pevehouse in an opening prayer.

The ceremony honored those who are gone while celebrating those who remain. A thin line stands between our heroes and their survivors.

“There are these ripple effects that last for years to come and they last for all of us that are left behind,” said Mary Carmikle, a guest speaker.

“Move forward knowing that what you're doing is still honorable,” Pevehouse said.

Janet Fifer's son died in the line of duty during swat training in 2013. She said that as a parent "it was difficult when the phone rang in the middle of the night" because she was afraid it would be a call about her son.

“So it just reminds us of the duty we have to protect, which we all signed up for and readily agreed to do. Sometimes, ultimately, the supreme sacrifice has to be given,” said Pevehouse.

He considers it a personal void when any officer is killed wearing the badge.

“Each one is representative of children that are missing a father, spouses that no longer have a mate,” Pevehouse said.

There were three added names, plus 142 other fallen heroes, remembered for their sacrifice and courage Thursday. Those names included Sebastian County Deputy William Cooper, McCrory Officer Aaron Barker and Miller County Detention Officer Lisa Mauldin.

Next Monday thousands of officers are expected to take part in honoring those killed in the line of duty this past year next week in Washington D.C.

© 2017 KTHV-TV


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