News Highlight

Ceremony Honors Fallen Corrections Officers

May 6, 2014

Craig Floyd (National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund Executive Director), SGT Aaron Livell, SGT Earnest Capitilo, CPL Killian Hayter (3rd US Infantry Regiment- Arlington National Cemetery), and Thomas Faust (DC Dept. of Corrections & COG Corrections Chief Committee Chair) Photo Credit: Elliot Harkavy (COG)

On Saturday, May 3rd, the Council of Governments Corrections Chiefs Committee sponsored the 23rd Annual Wreath Laying Ceremony in honor of fallen corrections officers at the National Law Enforcement Memorial in Washington, DC. The ceremony commenced National Correctional Employees Week, and brought together local officials from Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia as well as correctional employees and their families from around the United States.

On behalf of the region’s 22 local cities and counties, COG Executive Director Chuck Bean welcomed the distinguished correctional executives and personnel, government officials, and families and friends in attendance.

Special guest speaker, Assistant U.S. Attorney General Karol Mason, told attendees that the fallen officers “died bravely fulfilling their responsibilities to their institutions – and to the American people. They gave their lives to carry out one of the vital functions, and one of the most difficult challenges, required of a democracy: the care and protection of those committed to the custody of the state.”
 
Following the ceremony, honor guard teams from jurisdictions in Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia met in the annual honor guard competition. Prince George's County Department of Corrections won the competition. The D.C. Department of Corrections placed second and Fairfax County Sheriff’s Office placed third.

Officials honored seven officers, who died in 2013:

ELIEZER COLON-CLAUSSELLS
Agent II
Puerto Rico Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation

MAYRA DEL CARMEN RAMIREZ- BARRETO
Agent
Puerto Rico Department of Justice

ERIC J WILLIAMS
Senior Officer
Federal Bureau of Prisons

THOMAS LYNN CLEMENTS
Executive Director
Colorado Department of Corrections

GILBERT CORTEZ
Correctional Officer
California Department of Corrections

PEGGY LEE SYLVESTER
Assistant Warden
Opelousas, Louisiana, P.D.

JEREMY WAYNE MEYST
Correctional Deputy
Tulare County, California, S.O.


Four fallen officers from previous years were also honored:

GEORGE W HAIGHT (1893)
Corrections Keeper
Michigan Department of Corrections

BRYANT WHITMORE (1926)
Guard
Nevada Department of Corrections

RUFUS WILLIAM WALTERS (1938)
Correctional Officer
Florida State Road Department

PATRICK J FOGARTY (1958)
Turnkey
Lewis County, New York, S.O.

For photos from the event, please view:

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