FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MAY 19, 2014
On Saturday, May 17, 2014 at 6:00 Pm, the City of Bethlehem Police Department and the Fraternal Order of Police, Star Lodge # 20, held their Annual Memorial Service for National Police Week. May 15th each year, by an act of Congress, is National Peace Officer Memorial Day and the week it falls in is designated National Police Week. Each year, the ceremony is held at the Bethlehem Police Memorial which is located at the north end of the Officer Phillip Fahy Bridge.
The ceremony was attended by Mayor Robert Donchez, City Council members, Lehigh and Northampton County District Attorney’s Offices, the Pennsylvania State Police, the FBI, Allentown Police, Lehigh University Police, local law enforcement agencies, citizens and members of the City of Bethlehem Police Department and their families.
Bag pipes and taps were played by members of the Liberty High School Band. The “Warriors Watch Riders,” the “American Legion Riders,” and the “Nam Knights” participated in the delivery of the U.S flag in honor of Officers killed in the line of duty and the posting of the U.S. flag by the Bethlehem Police Honor Guard. Sands Casino changed the lights on the Blast Furnace area to blue beams of light to show the thin blue line; the line of police that stand between law abiding citizens and those that break the law.
Members in the audience and police officers who were veterans of the U.S. Military were also recognized and thanked for their service to their country and community. May 17th is also National Armed Forces Day across America.
Since 1907, six Bethlehem Police Officers have been killed in the line of duty. We remember those six officers and also the 20,000 plus police officers who have been killed nationwide since 1791. We also remember the retired officers who have passed away the past year.
National Police Week is also a time to honor and award Officers who have went above and beyond the call of duty, and citizens who have assisted the Police. This year (126) police officers, (2) City Paramedics, (1) FBI Agent, (1) Northampton County Prosecutor, (1) Lehigh County Detective, (2) Allentown Police Officers, (2) Pennsylvania State Police Troopers, (1) City 911 Supervisor, (1) Police employee and (1) citizen were recognized for their duty and service. The awards ranged from criminal homicide investigations and arrests, to major multi county burglary rings, to shots fired at police, other violent and serial crimes.
I would personally like to say Thank You to all the Bethlehem Police Officers, 911 Center Personnel and Police Staff for your Service and also another Thank You and job “Well Done” for the Officers and others being recognized with commendations.
Mark A. DiLuzio
Chief of Police