Tyler Johnson, [email protected]
ROCK SPRINGS, WYOMING (May 14, 2021) – The red, white and blue United States flag lowered outside of Rock Springs City Hall on Thursday to the tune of “Taps” being played on a trumpet.
Rock Springs Police Department officers and Veterans of the American Legion Archie Hay Post 24 saluted to remember the fallen law enforcement officers who were killed or disabled in the line of duty in 2020.
People observed as the American Legion retired the colors and give the United States flag to Chief of Police Dwane Pacheco. The formal ceremony is something the two do every year as part of Police Memorial Day, which is on May 15 every year.
“In 1962, Congress set aside May 15 as Police Memorial Day. So, this week of the 15th is always set aside to memorialize and remember those who made the sacrifice the year prior – those who killed or disabled in the line of duty,” said Pacheco, who is a 20-year retired Veteran from the United States Air Force Reserve.
“It always touches me because, as a patriot and as a person who has served my country in more than one capacity, it’s what we do. You see my guys, they’ve the got the American flag on their shoulders and that’s what we do. It’s very patriotic.”
On Thursday, the Rock Springs Police Department opened its doors to the community to get a glimpse at what they do and get to know some of the officers that serve to protect.
“What we try to do here at the police department is try to have our open house during this week so we can show the public what we do, but also give back to the community because they’re so good to us. We just also want them to see the good things our officers are doing and have an opportunity to see them in a non-adversarial situation,” Pacheco said.
Saturday, May 15, is also Armed Forces Day this year. It falls on the third Saturday of May each year and is a day given to honor and support United States veterans.
It was created by former Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson in 1949. It represents the unification of the armed forces under one department, which is the Department of Defense. President Harry S. Truman signed the presidential proclamation for the day a year later in 1950.
The American Legion is hosting its eighth annual Veterans Awareness Walk at Veterans Park on Saturday. The walk begins at 10 a.m. and is free for anyone to attend to honor and support United States Veterans.
Click here for more details on the event.