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Officers remembered at service

SALISBURY – The 16th Annual Rowan County Peace Officers Memorial Service was at noon today, and law enforcement officers, emergency personnel, magistrates, lawyers and judges attended.
But the guests of honor were the families of those officers who died in the line of duty.
“We are honored to be here in your presence today,” Associate Minister of First Presbyterian Church, Dr. Randal V. Kirby, said.
The ceremony is held every year as part of National Police Week.
“Today, this week, we gather to remember our fallen officers who gave the last full measure of service to our brothers and sisters,” Salisbury Chief Deputy Steve Whitley said.
Salisbury Police Lt. Karen Barbee placed a black sheer cloth over the memorial wreath during the service. Barbee is to retire from the police department at the end of May.
Rowan County Sheriff Office Chaplain Mike Taylor spoke and said he felt like officers didn’t get the respect and appreciation they deserve.
“In these days of violence and crime… instead of being appreciated, you are almost an enemy to society,” he said.
But today the officers were honored and remembered.
From May 2010 until May 2011, two officers died in the line of duty: DMV Inspector Timothy Charles Barnes, who passed away July 28 from heat exhaustion during training, and, Greene County Deputy Sheriff Jon-Michael Willis, shot and killed while responding to a domestic disturbance.
For more, read Wednesday’s Post.

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