Guest Opinions

Remembering officers who put their lives on the line

Idaho police officers stand at attention during the 17th annual Idaho Peace Officers' Memorial Ceremony held in Meridian, Idaho. May 14, 2015
Idaho police officers stand at attention during the 17th annual Idaho Peace Officers' Memorial Ceremony held in Meridian, Idaho. May 14, 2015

National Police Week occurs each year during the week of May 15th and recognizes the service and sacrifice of Law Enforcement nationwide. This week is to remind us of the law enforcement professionals who put their lives on the line each and every day to serve their communities.

In 1789, President George Washington signed the Judiciary Act, which effectively established the Federal Judiciary and the framework to enforce the rule of law in the United States. At that time, he appointed the first United States Marshals. In the same spirit of humility and reverence for public service that President George Washington embodied, and because of the historical roots the United States Marshal represents, I believe it is fitting to ask the good people of Idaho to join me in an expression of gratitude to the men and women of law enforcement.

As a lifelong Idahoan, over the past 29 years, I have worked for City, State and Federal Governments. I began my service in law enforcement in 1988 as a Police Officer for the City of Pocatello.

Over the course of time, I have also served as a Probation/Parole Officer, Prison Warden, and currently as United States Marshal for the District of Idaho.

This experience has given me a broad perspective and a great appreciation for the rule of law and allowed me to witness first-hand, the role law enforcement plays in our lives.

I have come to personally know many of the men and women of law enforcement in Idaho. Their life stories and charitable hearts you certainly know. These men and women who embody lives of integrity and honor are your friends, neighbors and family.

These relationships have shaped me to be a good citizen and contributing member of life in Idaho, grounded on idea of doing right by my neighbor. I know from experience how the men and women of law enforcement have made Idaho a great place to live.

We are blessed in our local communities with law enforcement who is willing to respond at a moment’s notice to any situation. Please take time to thank the law enforcement staff throughout Idaho for the outstanding jobs they do. Gratitude is a perishable attribute. Please take time to express it during National Police Week and all year long.

Brian T. Underwood is United States Marshal for the District of Idaho.

Peace Officers Memorial Service

The 19th Annual Peace Officer’s Memorial Vigil and Ceremony is a two-day event:

Tonight, May 17, at 9 is a Candlelight Vigil.

Thursday, May 18, at 9 a.m. with an Officer’s Assembly, followed by a 10 a.m. Memorial Ceremony with Boise Police Cpl. Kevin Holtry serving as keynote speaker.

Both events take place at the Idaho Peace Officers’ Memorial, 700 S. Stratford Dr., Meridian, ID 83642. Details at (208) 489-6500.

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