The Honorable Michael Chertoff, Actors Richard Belzer and Vincent D’Onofrio Headlined the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial’s 20th Anniversary Gala
Washington, DC — The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial celebrated 20 years of honoring America’s law enforcement officers—especially the fallen heroes—at its 20th Anniversary Gala on Wednesday evening, October 12, at the Grand Hyatt in Washington, DC. All proceeds from the Gala benefit the National Law Enforcement Museum, currently under construction and planned to open in late 2013 across the street from the Memorial in Washington’s historic Judiciary Square.
The Honorary Michael Chertoff, former Secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, served as Chair of the star-studded event, sharing poignant keynote remarks honoring the law enforcement profession. Mr. Chertoff was joined by the event’s Master of Ceremonies, Richard Belzer of Law & Order: SVU. Also joining the celebration was actor and National Law Enforcement Museum National Spokesperson, Vincent D’Onofrio, who welcomed guests and introduced the event.
Craig W. Floyd, Chairman & CEO of the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, delivered warm welcoming remarks, reminding the audience of many of the Memorial Fund’s accomplishments and major milestones in the past two decades. “Tonight we gather with a common goal,” said Mr. Floyd. “We want every citizen of this great nation to know that we live freely and safely because of America’s law enforcement professionals, and that we should never take their service, nor their sacrifice for granted. We must do everything possible to ensure that those brave officers make it home to their families at the end of their shift.”
Mr. Floyd also presented the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund’s Distinguished Service Award to Dick Wolf, producer of the Law & Order franchise, for his important work in humanizing the law enforcement profession through his portrayal of peace officers.
Stirring musical tributes from Daniel Rodriguez, Pipe Major Steve Butterbrodt of the Port Authority of NY/NJ Police Department Pipe & Drums, and Officer Chris Jackson (ret.) of the Metropolitan Police Department of DC, were some of the evening’s highlights. Other special moments included a video tribute from former President George H.W. Bush, who dedicated the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial 20 years ago, and now serves as Co-Chair of the National Honorary Campaign Committee of the National Law Enforcement Museum, along with former President Bill Clinton. Actor, director, and producer, Clint Eastwood, who serves as National Law Enforcement Museum Honorary Chairman, also shared some encouraging words of support for the Museum via video.
The event offered one of the first glimpses of the upcoming Museum’s Hall of Remembrance, an exhibit designed to tell the stories behind the names currently inscribed on the national monument dedicated to America’s fallen law enforcement officers.
Concerns of Police Survivors (COPS) National President Linda Moon Gregory reflected on one of those names in particular—her brother, Jacksonville (FL) Police Officer James Moon, who made the ultimate sacrifice on September 27, 1971. She, along with Police Unity Tour Founder, Patrick Montuore, and Police Unity Tour rider and survivor, Barb Lyons, spoke from the heart about the deep-rooted meaning of the Memorial, and its inherent impact over the past 20 years—as a place to respect, honor, and remember 19,298 peace officers who have fallen in the line of duty.
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About the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund
Established in 1984, the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund is a private non-profit organization dedicated to honoring the service and sacrifice of America's law enforcement officers and to promoting officer safety. The Memorial Fund maintains the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, DC, which contains the names of 19,298 officers who have died in the line of duty throughout U.S. history. The Memorial Fund is now working to create the National Law Enforcement Museum, which will tell the story of law enforcement through high-tech, interactive exhibitions, historical artifacts and extensive educational programming.
To schedule an interview with Memorial Fund Chairman Craig W. Floyd, contact Steve Groeninger, firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the National Law Enforcement Museum
Authorized by Congress in the year 2000, the 55,000-square-foot National Law Enforcement Museum will be a mostly underground museum located adjacent to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, DC's Judiciary Square. The Museum will tell the story of American law enforcement through high-tech, interactive exhibits, collections, research and education. Museum construction has commenced with a projected opening in late 2013. The Museum is an initiative of the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, a private non-profit [501(c)(3)] organization established in 1984 and dedicated to honoring the service and sacrifice of America's law enforcement officers and to promoting officer safety. For more information about the National Law Enforcement Museum, visit www.LawEnforcementMuseum.org.
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