Columbia honors fallen law enforcement officers

Columbia Police Department honors fallen officers Friday
Published: May. 26, 2023 at 9:54 PM CDT
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COLUMBIA, Miss. (WDAM) - Eight law enforcement officers have died in the line of duty in the Columbia area.

Friday morning, those officers were honored in a memorial ceremony in front of the Marion County courthouse .

Columbia Police Department Chief Michael Kelly said it was important to host this ceremony annually to remember those who died in the line of duty.

“It’s a part of human nature to forget and we need reminders,” Kelly said. “This memorial _ the stone memorial and this gathering _ serves as that reminder to the community that there were brave people who put on a uniform and didn’t go home at the end of their shift.”

The community and family members of the fallen officers were invited to the event.

Janice Polk Shivers Lofton lost her father, Sheriff J.V. Polk, in 1960. Lofton said it’s important to honor law enforcement because you never know if they will return home after work.

“Everybody else seems to have forgotten,” Lofton said. “But I don’t.”

She said the families of officers killed on duty remember, and the older they get, the more painful it becomes.

“Because the older you get, you realize what you’re missing,” Lofton said. “He’s not seeing my children, my grandchildren, and he was such a wonderful Christian man.”

Cynthia Sellers lost a family member, Officer Danny Sellers, in 1998.

Sellers said she appreciated Friday’s event.

“It’s a blessing,” Sellers said. “Keep the good work up. I thank God for each and every one that came out (in) support.

Sellers said it was a blessing to know that somebody still cares.

“My heart goes out to each and every one of the other fallen officers, but (Friday’s memorial) is truly a blessing,” she said.

Family members of fallen officers were given roses during the ceremony.

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