Hattiesburg hosts memorial balloon release for fallen officers

Hattiesburg hosts memorial balloon release for fallen officers

HATTIESBURG, MS WDAM) - The city of Hattiesburg hosted a memorial balloon release for fallen officers Liquori Tate and Benjamin Deen.

“Even though from what I’ve been through my whole life, I would like to say that I know it’s been hard getting through it, but I’m through it and I’m thankful that I’m still here,” said Walker Deen, son of Benjamin Deen. “I’m thankful that we all got together to come over tonight.”

Rain nor lightning was going to stop people in the community from honoring their fallen heroes on the four-year anniversary of their death.

“It is such an honor for the community to come out and show support for the Deen and Tate family,” said Hattiesburg Police Assistant Chief Peggy Sealy. “They continue to show support as they have the four years.”

Deen and Tate were shot and killed during a traffic stop on May 9, 2015. Those who worked alongside the officers say the ceremony is just one way the community remembers two.

“As long as I’m able to, it does not matter if I’m in the capacity of law enforcement or a citizen, I will always be a part of this,” said Sealy.

Family and friends said while they are thankful for the received prayers, they send their prayers to all families of law enforcement lost in the line of duty.

“Definitely brings everything home to us,” said Mary Ellen Deen, mother of Benjamin Deen. “I immediately start thinking of the family, it’s actually what hits my mind first. I know what they’re going through when they hear the news and it’s just horrible.”

While the ceremony was short, those who knew the two said their legacy will last a lifetime.

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