More names were added to NYPD headquarters wall of remembrance Tuesday morning.
The lobby of One Police Plaza was filled on May 3 with mourners, brimming with sorrow for officers who have lost their lives. Dubbed the Memorial Day Ceremony, families of the fallen and top police officials remembered their kin through a reverent commemoration.
Following the singing of the national anthem, a forest of floral wreaths from police unions and other organizations were set up at the foot of the Hall of Heroes, a wall dedicated to lost law enforcement members. After the bouquets had been set, top cop Keechant Sewell spoke on the importance of the event through both honoring the 35 lost while also showing respect to the families.
“It is an honor for you all to join us today in the Hall of Heroes, among medals of bronze plates and plaques, walls that hold our heart and our reverence and display the vow of the NYPD,” Sewell said. “This ceremony of sacrifice is truly one of our most significant and one we wish we never had to have. Beyond the windblown flags in our courtyard is the gleaming spire of One World Trade Center. The very location women and men rushed to, among others throughout the city. In efforts to rescue and recover. We are constantly reminded that the tragedies of 911 did not end on that fateful day.”
Attendees rose to their feet and wept as the 35 names were read aloud. The police department often say they become surrogate family members when a husband or son, sister or niece is buried but never was this more evident than during the emotionally rich proceedings. As a senior stood from her wheelchair, struggling to remain upright while the names were read aloud an attending officer took her by the arm, helping her to honor the dead.
With a solemn salute and hands on their hearts, the NYPD stood at attention as the new plaque was unveiled. Below the words pride, commitment, and respect was a large black flag with a blue line across it, as it was raised the names of the fallen were revealed.
“So here we are, in this hall of polished plaques of fallen giants, who as of today, number 1,115, never forgetting our promise, nor the families who carry the burden of a debt we can never repay,” Sewell said.