Names of Three Fallen Pittsburgh Police Officers Added to National Memorial
A total of 324 officers killed in the line of duty are being added this year to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial
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Washington, DC – The names of three Pittsburgh Police officers shot and killed just over a year ago while responding to a domestic violence report were engraved Tuesday on the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial during the annual Engraving Day ceremony.
Officers Stephen Mayhle and Paul Sciullo were gunned down by a heavily armed criminal wearing bullet-resistant body armor as the officers approached his mother’s home in the Stanton Heights section of the city in response to a disturbance call. Officer Eric Kelly had just completed his shift when he responded to the shooting scene to assist his fellow officers. He, too, was shot and killed by the same offender. The April 4, 2009, incident marked the deadliest single day in the 153-year history of the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police.
“2009 was a tragic and heartbreaking year for the law enforcement community in Pittsburgh,” said Craig W. Floyd, chairman and CEO of the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, which maintains the nation’s monument to fallen officers. “Like their counterparts in other parts of the country, Pittsburgh had to deal with the sudden and violent loss of multiple officers in a single incident. By inscribing the names of Officers Kelly, Mayhle and Sciullo on this national Memorial, we continue the healing process by ensuring that their service and sacrifice will always be remembered here in the nation’s capital,” Mr. Floyd added.
Pittsburgh was one of five jurisdictions that suffered multiple officer fatalities in a single shooting incident during 2009. The others were Oakland, CA, which lost four officers in March; Okaloosa County, FL, where two officers were shot and killed in April; Seminole County, OK, which lost two officers in July; and Lakewood, WA, where four officers were gunned down in November.
On Tuesday, Deputy Police Chief Paul Donaldson led a delegation of family members, loved ones and police officials from Pittsburgh to witness the engraving of the three Pittsburgh officers’ names on the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial, which is located in Judiciary Square in downtown Washington, DC. Dedicated in 1991, the Memorial now honors 18,983 peace officers who have died in the line of duty throughout U.S. history dating back to the first known death in 1792. Since its first line-of-duty death in 1885, the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police has lost 65 officers.
Officers Kelly, Mayhle and Sciullo are among 116 law enforcement officers nationwide killed in the line of duty during 2009. That was lowest number of law enforcement fatalities since 1959, when there were 109—“a glimmer of encouraging news among the devastation felt by Pittsburgh and so many other communities this past year,” Mr. Floyd said. The names of those 116 officers, along with 208 others who died in previous years but whose stories had previously been lost to history, are being engraved this month. “While this year’s Engraving Day ceremony salutes the three heroes from Pittsburgh, it symbolically commemorates the service and sacrifice of all of the men and women who have given their lives for the safety and protection of their fellow Americans,” Mr. Floyd added.
All 324 newly engraved names will be formally dedicated on the Memorial during the 22nd Annual Candlelight Vigil on the evening of May 13, part of the National Police Week observance. Approximately 20,000 people attend the event each May. In addition, the vigil will be videocast live over the Internet, allowing family members, colleagues and others who cannot make it to Washington, DC, to experience the ceremony in their communities.
Officer Mayhle’s name was engraved on Panel 12-West, Line 27, of the Memorial, along with the following names: Officer Kenneth Baldwin, Okaloosa County (FL) Airport Police, who died on September 11, 1987; Deputy Stephen Gallagher, Lewis County (WA) Sheriff’s Office, August 18, 2009; Investigator Chadwick Carr, Greene County (VA) Sheriff’s Office, June 4, 2009; and Sergeant Mark Dunakin, Oakland (CA) Police Department, March 21, 2009.
The names of Officers Kelly and Sciullo were engraved on Panel 14-West, Line 27, along with the following names: Officer J. Harold Hanson, California Highway Patrol, who died on August 19, 1951; Officer Richard Crittenden, North St. Paul (MN) Police Department, September 7, 2009; and Sergeant Mickey Hutchens, Winston-Salem (NC) Police Department, October 12, 2009.
For information about the Candlelight Vigil and National Police Week, visit www.LawMemorial.org/policeweek.
Contacts: Kevin Morison, NLEOMF
202-737-7134 -- firstname.lastname@example.org
Diane Richard, Pittsburgh Bureau of Police
412-323-7814 -- email@example.com