In 1962, President Kennedy proclaimed May 15 as National Peace Officers Memorial Day and the calendar week in which May 15 falls, as National Police Week. National Peace Officers Memorial Day, established to honor and remember our fallen law enforcement officers, is one of only two days each year during which government agencies, businesses and residents are to fly their U.S. flags at half-staff.
“We ask everyone to take a moment on May 15 to reflect upon the sacrifice that these 307 officers, and their families and friends, have made,” Sevierville Police Chief Joseph Manning said. “Like all officers, they risked their lives every day to protect our communities from those that would do us harm.”
Established by a joint resolution of Congress in 1962, National Police Week pays special recognition to those law enforcement officers who have lost their lives in the line of duty for the safety and protection of others. National Police Week is a collaborative effort of many organizations dedicated to honoring America’s law enforcement community.
This year, the names of 307 officers killed in the line of duty are being added to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, DC. Normally, these fallen heroes would be honored during a candlelight vigil, but due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic this isn’t possible this year. However, on Wednesday, May 13, at 8:00 p.m., a virtual Candlelight Vigil will be held and the reading of the names can be watched from anywhere in the world.
The observance of National Police Week is organized by a group of organizations led by the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund (NLEOMF), Concerns of Police Survivors, the Fraternal Order of Police and the Fraternal Order of Police Auxiliary. For more information about National Police Week, please visit www.LawMemorial.org/policeweek.