I Want To ...
Services & Info.
County Cable 6
Leggett, Public Safety and Elected Officials, Family and Supporters of Fallen Officers Dedicate County’s New Public Safety Memorial; First Permanent Memorial in County to Honor Fallen Public Safety Personnel
Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett today participated in the dedication ceremony for the County’s new Public Safety Memorial located on the grounds of the soon-to-be completed Public Safety Headquarters at 100 Edison Park Drive in Gaithersburg. The memorial, which is the first of its kind in the County, is meant to be a permanent site to commemorate the courage and sacrifice of public safety personnel from the County’s Department of Police, Fire and Rescue Service, Sheriff’s Office, Maryland-National Capital Park Police, Montgomery County Division (M-NCPP, MCD) and Department of Correction and Rehabilitation, who made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty.
“We are here today to honor and remember the 30 valiant members of our public safety family who devoted their lives to serve and protect…and because they accepted the challenges of that calling…lost their lives,” said Leggett. “We also pay tribute to all of our public safety personnel, who by taking an oath of public service, vow to defend the safety and rights of us all…even it that means making the ultimate sacrifice.”
Speaking at the ceremony with Leggett were: U.S. Congressman Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), County Council President Roger Berliner, Fire and Rescue Service Chief Richard Bowers, Police Chief J. Thomas Manger, the Director of the Upcounty Regional Services Center Catherine Matthews, representing the Public Safety Memorial Steering Committee Steven A. Robins, Esq., representing the family and friends of the fallen heroes, Mrs. Fran Daly and Department of Correction and Rehabilitation Director Arthur Wallenstein. Also attending the ceremony were Sheriff Darren Popkin; Maryland-National Capital Park Police, Montgomery County Division Chief Darien Manley; families and friends of fallen heroes; members of the public safety community and interested community members.
Fire Chief Bowers and Police Chief Manger provided the welcome. “Every public safety employee in Montgomery County, past and present, can feel a personal connection to this Memorial. We are all so grateful to everyone who helped make this a reality,” Police Chief J. Thomas Manger said. Chief Bowers added, “As we honor these fallen officers, who were taken from us far too soon, let this memorial reflect our pledge to always remember their courageous actions.”
Congressman Chris Van Hollen said, “Today, we honor the brave men and women who have gone before us and those who continue their work - they are the first to respond in any emergency and put their lives at risk every day.”
The memorial was designed by nationally-recognized artist Ted Clausen from Cambridge, Massachusetts. His mission was to create a memorial which honored each of the County’s public safety departments and also reflected their vital relationship to each other. The memorial is entered by a pathway flanked by two stone pillars. “I designed this work to be a journey, leaving the public bustle of our everyday lives and moving toward the peace and introspection of the memorial space,” said Clausen. On the left side of the pathway are a 12 by 18-foot American flag, and 10 by 15-foot State, County, and Memorial Agency flags.
The circular memorial site is defined by five separate granite memorial stones, one for each County Agency, arranged in a star-like pattern. One side of the stones feature engraved comments from officers about the work they do and their interdependence with the other agencies. On the other face of the stones are engraved quotes from community members expressing their appreciation for the public safety agencies. On the top polished surface of the stones are the names of the fallen officers: 16 County Police Officers, 12 Firefighters, one Deputy Sheriff and one Park Police Officer. An engraved paving circle surrounds the site which also features a low bench to allow visitors to sit and reflect.
“As Montgomery County Sheriff, it is my privilege to join fellow members of the public safety community in dedicating this Public Safety Memorial. The memorial recognizes the heroism and sacrifice demonstrated by our correctional officers, deputy sheriffs, firefighters and police officers, and expresses our everlasting appreciation for their service,” commented Sheriff Darren Popkin.
M-NCPP, MCD Chief Darien Manley reflected, “As great an honor as it is to have national memorials dedicated to our fallen heroes, I believe that it is an even more meaningful honor to memorialize their sacrifices locally in the County where they served and paid the ultimate price.”
The landscape architects for the memorial are Peter White and ZEN Associates in Washington, D.C. and Boston.
County Council President Roger Berliner noted, “Today we dedicate a long awaited memorial to our fallen Montgomery County public safety heroes. But, additionally, we are memorializing all the men and women who have served, are serving and will serve and protect us and saying a solemn thank you.”
Speaking on behalf of the family members and friends of the fallen heroes, Fran Daly, wife of slain police Captain James E. Daly, Jr. said, “I am so pleased that now there is a permanent monument with all the names of our loved ones who were killed in the line of duty. They gave their lives doing a job that not everyone can do; because it takes great skills, courage, and dedication. I hope this memorial makes their sacrifice more real to the community-at-large.”
Public Safety units which participated in today’s ceremony included members of: The Montgomery County Law Enforcement Gospel Choir, the Montgomery County Combined Public Safety Honor Guard, the Fire and Police Pipes and Drums, the Agency Memorial Flag Teams, the Fire and Rescue Buglers, the Police Honor Guard Rifle Team and M-NCPP, MCD Horse-Mounted and Motorcycle Units.
“The names of those honored at the Memorial this week will now and forever be part of the history and culture of Montgomery County, Maryland,” said Arthur Wallenstein, Director of Correction and Rehabilitation during his closing remarks. “May their families and loved ones go in peace as we remember their names and their service.”
Planning for the memorial began in 1995 through a Public Safety Memorial Steering Committee (PSMSC) with coordination from the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County. In October of 2006, a ceremonial groundbreaking was held at the site of the current Public Safety Training Academy in Rockville. After confirmation of the County Executive’s Smart Growth Initiative providing for the development of a combined-use Public Safety Headquarters at the former GE Technology Park in Gaithersburg, that location was deemed the site most appropriate for construction of the memorial.
The PSM memorial was funded by a public/private partnership. Funds continue to be needed for the upkeep of the memorial. Donations may be made to the Montgomery County Public Safety Memorial Fund, a 501 © 3 non-profit organization designated by the County Council to manage those funds. To learn more about the memorial and how to donate, visit www.creativemoco.com/public-art/public-safety-memorial.
# # #
|Release ID: 12-100
Media Contact: Lucille Baur 240-777-6507
» Return to News Releases