BUCKHANNON — The Upshur County Commission presented a proclamation during their Thursday morning meeting, recognizing the city’s police force and VIPS program.
Under the proclamation, January 9 is identified as National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day each year across the country, as citizens show their support for the men and women in blue. These are people who take action to risk putting their lives on the line every day for the service of their communities. In order to make communities safer, many situations require working in cooperation with other local, state and federal agencies, and volunteer groups, as they are often the only means of a paid emergency resource that a community possesses.
In addition to the many occasions where law enforcement spends long hours apart from their families, the job can be quite thankless at times and unfortunately has rendered negative attention towards their service. As citizens, not just on National Law enforcement Day, but any day, we can be an encouragement and show the support needed for them. Many hours are devoted to support our youth through meetings and additional training, to be able to provide society with education and safety. They have taken the time to teach students at schools the importance of being a respected citizen and acknowledging the dangers of drugs.
According to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund (NLEOMF), ever since the first reported line-of-duty death in 1786, there have been 21,000 U.S. law enforcement officers who have paid the ultimate price. There are over 900,000 sworn law enforcement officers serving in the U.S. with 12 percent of those being female, as stated by the NLEOMF. Over the past decade, 1,582 law enforcement officers died in the line of duty, resulting in an average of one death every 55 hours, or about 158 per year, according to NLEOMF. New York City Police Department lost more officers in the line of duty than any other department with 899 deaths. Texas lost 1,751 officers, which was more than any other state. According to NLEOMF, September 11, 2001 remains the deadliest account of officers losing their lives in the line of duty, with 72 officers killed while responding to the terrorist attacks on America.
Members of communities across the nation may show and extend their support for our law enforcement every January 9, or any time, by simply thanking them, encouraging the youth to send letters of thanks, sharing positive words on social media, and wearing blue clothing. As a community, we are grateful for these great men and women who serve and protect.