ATHENS, AL (WAFF) - The Athens Police Department will be holding their annual memorial service Thursday for officers who have died while in the line of duty.
The memorial will be held at the Limestone County Courthouse at 5 p.m.
"This is a way to honor these men and to show their descendants this community's appreciation for their service and sacrifice," Chief Floyd Johnson.
Nine officers have died while serving in Limestone County, they are as follows:
- Bedford F. Brackeen was killed on March 24, 1941. He was sitting in his patrol car with his partner when a man approached the car and started an argument about a prior incident. The man then pulled out a revolver and started shooting at the officers. Brackeen was shot three times but still attempted to chase the subject until he collapsed. The suspect was arrested near Nashville are charged with murder.
- Billy Daly was killed on Dec 22, 1964. He was on his police motorcycle when a vehicle hit him on U.S. 31 and Forrest Street.
- Lt. Benton McLemore was killed on March 7, 1969. A suspect shot McLemore after he responded to a home for a welfare check. The suspect was known to be mentally ill. Before the suspect could be captured he killed himself.
- David E. Temple was attempting to arrest a man for a robbery on Sept. 13, 1979. The man leaned out of the car and shot Temple. The suspect then got out of the car, walked over to Temple, and shot him several more times. The suspect was shot and killed after injuring another officer after a police chase through Madison.
- Simmie L. Jeffries was killed on December 21, 1984, when his patrol car wrecked with a tractor trailer in Limestone County.
- Dewer Wayne Dorsey Sr. was killed on Feb. 11, 1989. He was in a car accident while transporting blood to Athens-Limestone Hospital. The hospital treated and released him but he later died from a blood clot.
- Sgt. Larry Wayne Russell and Officer Tony Mims responded to a call made by a man with a history of mental illness on January 2, 2004. The man shot at the officers when they pulled into his driveway. The bullets went through the vehicle and their bulletproof vest killing Mims and then Russell. The suspect later died in prison.
After reading the 'End of Watch' list there will be a presentation of colors by the Honor Guard, Taps will be played, and a closing prayer.
"We need to not only honor these nine men but to thank all of those in law enforcement who risk their lives each day to protect our community," said Mayor Ronnie Marks.
Everyone is welcome to the ceremony.
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