By MELANIE ZAYAS - Fox 44 News
The American Legion honored first responders today. The Boonville law enforcement gathered for a special ceremony in honor of their hard work throughout the year. Three special honorees from the fire, police and EMS departments were chosen for those awards. The chairman of the event, Ron Byrley says, “They’re picked by their peers. For outstanding devotion to our community and for their work in general you know this is something that we take great pride in doing. You know these people put their lives on the line for us on a daily basis and we’re proud to honor them.”
In light of the recent off duty officer involved shooting that took place in Hopkinsville, a very solemn tone took over the crowd this evening. Boonville Lieutenant Mark Hadley says, “It’s heartbreaking when an officer is involved in something like that. We are like a family and since we have stressors that those people may not be able to identify with well we can. So our hearts go out to that family of that officer.” Byrley says honorary nights like these are made for those in law enforcement who continue to dedicate and sacrifice their lives on a daily basis. He says, “It’s not only the police officers, the firemen these EMT’s, you never know what kind of situation they’re going into. Anybody that harms these people we have a special place for them.”
For the Boonville law enforcement, their focus is on moving forward and staying alert of what could be imminent danger. Hadley, “You really have to be cognizant of your surroundings at all times. When you really never did before the whole dynamics of even small town policing has changed in the recent past year.”
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