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    News / Event Coverage

    2004 LB Police & Fire Memorial

    (May 11, 2004) -- Bagpipes sounded Amazing Grace and a 21-gun salute shook LB's Civic Center plaza at midmorning May 11 as City Hall officials, police officers, firefighters and LB residents assembled at the Police and Fire Memorial (Chestnut Ave. south of Broadway) for the city's annual remembrance honoring LB's fallen public safety officers.

    Vice Mayor Frank Colonna was among the first to speak:

    "We live in difficult times now...We learn of egregious deeds endured by our fellow citizens...If history teaches us anything, it teaches us that we must take these challenges and face them head-on to try to make for a better world. We also have learned to accept the fact that there always is a cost attached to ensuring our safety and security and we must make sure that when we boast about having the finest men and women in uniform, that we stand committed to providing them the best we can offer..."

    Among other dignitaries attending (not a complete list): Councilmembers Bonnie Lowenthal, Laura Richardson and Val Lerch; staff represented some other offices (Mayor O'Neill was in DC on a homeland security matter; Councilwoman Kell had a death in her family).

    LBPD brass and sworn personnel assembled in uniform and in file.PDFD memorial 5/11/04
    Photo: Wayne Chaney, LBFD

    PDFD memorial 5/11/04
    Photo: Wayne Chaney, LBFD
    LBFD command staff attended, joined by rank and file firefighters.

    City Manager Jerry Miller and Assistant City Manager Christine Shippey (foreground) were among top city management present.PDFD Memorial 5/11/04
    Photo: Wayne Chaney, LBFD

    PDFD Memorial 5/11/04Also present were (left to right) Assistant City Prosecutors Dan Murphy and Dan Lenhart, City Attorney Bob Shannon and City Prosecutor Tom Reeves.

    Among the speakers:

    LB Police Chief Anthony Batts:

    "When you go to other jobs and you make a mistake, you get to go home at the end of that day...In our line of work, that doesn't happen all the time...There's no way that we can repay by words, or by ceremonies, the missed Christmases, the birthdays, the graduations, the weddings that these people will never see...And there's nothing that we can say to ever ease that level of pain that a family has. But what we can do is we can remember, and we can pay homage to people who gave we could sleep soundly at night..."

    LB Fire Chief Terry Harbour:

    "There is a cumulative build-up of internal physical and mental injuries that happen over a career of 25 or 30 years...The average police officer and fire fighter gets a little more than five years out of their retirement...I would like to salute every public safety personnel here today, active and retired, for what they do for the city of Long Beach...We hope and pray that we don't have to add any names onto this memorial for a long, long time to come."

    Brian Holliday...just a child when his father, LBFD firefighter Kent Holliday, perished in a 1964 training accident:

    "It's very comforting to us to know that you all won't forget...And I cannot emphasize enough how important it is to us, to our family, how important memorials like this are to us, and we're very appreciative of your actions today...Whenever a fire fighter, whenever a peace officer goes down in the line of duty, it affects us personally as well...For those who have lost loved ones, we grieve with you as well..."

    Fallen LBFD fire fighters' names were individually read, followed by the sounding a traditional fire bell.

    LBPD officers' who died in the line of duty were also named one by one, followed by bagpipes...

    ...and a 21-gun salute fired in three volleys..

    ...and two buglers sounding Taps.

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