WASHINGTON (Gray DC) – Thousands of officers in their families are in Washington this week to honor the officers who died in 2015 and to remember those who passed away in the line of duty years ago.
The weekend draws thousands of people from across the country to remember the officers through many days of events.
Nearly 2,000 officers biked from their hometowns to Washington, all arriving together to a large crowd honoring their accomplishment. Each officer, though, will tell you they were riding in memory of someone special.
“he was a great police officer that loved his family and his community,” said Officer Daniel Ellis’ wife Katie, who looked on from the large crowd.
Ellis was killed back in November during the pursuit of a suspect. Kelli Fraz rode to DC in his honor. She said the ride was taxing, both physically and mentally. But, she says, every time it got tough, she thought of her bike patrol partner.
“I didn’t want to stop and let him down,” Fraz said visibly emotional.
The ride, which took three days, finished at the National Law Enforcement Memorial, where new names are etched in each year next to those who lost their lives before them.
Katie Ellis says she was comforted by the large crowds, knowing someone else has walked the dark path she’s currently traveling.
More than two dozen people from the Richmond Police Department will make the trip over the course of the weekend.
All who were there honoring Officer Ellis say the wounds are still fresh and the heeling process has been slow. But, they say, these types of events ensure Officer Ellis’ sacrifice will always be remembered.