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Colorado police departments honor those killed in line of duty

Posted at 7:03 AM, May 17, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-17 09:03:19-04

DENVER -- Police departments across the country and here in Colorado are honoring those who have died in the line of duty over the years. It’s all part of National Police Week.

On Thursday, the Denver Police Department will hold a ceremony to honor its fallen heroes. The department says it has lost 72 officers in its 159-year history.

The last DPD officer who died in the line of duty was Celena Hollis. She was shot in 2012 while trying to break up a fight at a jazz festival.

All week, Denver police have been holding events to honor their fallen. On May 12, DPD kicked off the week with a Blue Thunder 100 motorcycle run.

On Thursday, the department will host a ceremony at 10 a.m. in front of its police memorial on Cherokee Street.

Meanwhile, Adams County is honoring Deputy Heath Gumm and others who have died in the line of duty with a candlelight vigil at E.B. Rains Jr. Memorial Park. That vigil is set for 7 p.m. and the public is invited to attend.

Also in Weld County, the sheriff’s office along with the Greeley Police Department will host a ceremony at 6:30 p.m. Thursday. That ceremony will include the lowering of the flags, a 21-gun salute and guest speakers among other events. This will happen at the Weld County officer’s memorial in Bittersweet Park.

Colorado has lost three police officers in the past six months. Douglas County Sheriff’s Deputy Zackari Parrish was killed in a New Year’s Eve ambush. Gumm was killed in January after getting into a foot chase with a suspect. El Paso County Deputy Micah Flick was also killed in February while confronting a suspected car thief.

Parrish’s name was added to the Colorado Law Enforcement Officer’s Memorial wall last week. His name was also added to the national memorial in Washington, D.C.

Gumm and Flick’s names will be added next year since they died in 2018.

Colorado has lost at least one police officer each year since 2004. Nationwide, 129 officers were killed last year and 54 have already been killed this year.

President Donald Trump spoke at the 37th annual Peace Officer’s Memorial Service on Tuesday. He declared May 15 as Peace Officers Memorial Day.