The month of May is a very important time for the law enforcement profession. In 1962, President Kennedy proclaimed May 15 as National Peace Officers Memorial Day and the calendar week in which May 15 falls, as National Police Week. Established by a joint resolution of Congress in 1962, National Police Week pays special recognition to those law enforcement officers who have lost their lives in the line of duty for the safety and protection of others. The towns of eastern Wake County have been blessed to not have inscribed the name of one of their own into the granite panels of the national law enforcement memorial in Washington DC. To never lose an officer is the number one priority of every agency head. That goal constantly consumes our time, energies and prayers.
As we approach this important date for our profession, I am asking our community members to please take a moment to remember this faithful breed of men and women. To honor the memory of those brave men and women who have laid down such a heavy sacrifice upon the alter of public service. I would also encourage them to seek out an opportunity to make a small gesture toward those who currently serve to keep our communities safe. The tragedy of our particular line of work is the inability to measure crime that’s prevented. That fact often robs our officers of the evidence of a job well done. The satisfaction of seeing and touching the product of a day’s labor is a motivating factor that these hard working public servants do not get to enjoy.
As someone blessed to interact with these heroes on a daily basis, I can attest to the tireless effort dedicated by our law enforcement officers to ensure the safety and security of our community. As you read these words I hope you remember that last night your entire home slept with both eyes closed. That ability is to some degree, made possible by the knowledge that should something happen during the hours of darkness that these brave men and women will be there.
Please, let’s not wait until one of our own loses their life in our service before we recognize their efforts. A quick word of encouragement or simple thank you will help all of our officers remember why they risk so much, a needed fact during this time of reflecting on those who have given their all.
Editor’s note: Godwin is the Chief of Police of the Knightdale Police Department.