DENVER (KDVR) — May 16 marks the end of National Police Week, a chance to honor those who have made the ultimate sacrifice.
Every year, thousands gather in Washington, D.C., where names of fallen officers from the past year are added to a memorial wall.
This year, however, the pandemic has forced organizers to cancel those events.
“Normally, we’d be having a service at the south steps of the U.S. Capitol building, where the president would address the families of survivors,” says Robert Cook. “That can’t happen this year because of the virus pandemic.”
Friday night, hundreds of people in the Colorado law enforcement community gathered to honor two Colorado State Patrol members who died in 2019.
Cpl. Daniel Groves was killed on March 13, while helping a stranded motorist in a blizzard on Interstate 76.
On June 14, Master Trooper William Moden was killed while responding to a rollover crash on I-70.
“Unfortunately, with everything that’s going on this year, things had to change,” says Sgt. Blake White. “So we had to make some adjustments.”
The processions were organized by Concerns of Police Survivors (COPS) and state patrol.
Hundreds of officers drove by Groves’ home in Louisville and by Moden’s home in Aurora.
State patrol asked people to watch virtually, but many still showed up to line streets near the homes.
“We really just want to honor their memory, and support and love the families,” said Cook.
A public ceremony at the Colorado Law Enforcement Memorial in Golden has also been canceled due to COVID-19. Colorado State Patrol plans on adding the two names to the memorial wall at a later date.