Fallen Law Enforcement Honored At Beach Memorial In OC - 47 ABC - Delmarva's Choice

Fallen Law Enforcement Honored At Beach Memorial In OC

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OCEAN CITY, Md. - According to National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, a total of 1,539 law enforcement officers died in the line of duty during the past 10 years, an average of one death every 57 hours or 154 per year.  There were 120 law enforcement officers killed in 2012.

Saturday, the survivors of fallen officers in Maryland took their annual trip to Ocean City to remember their loved ones, like Martha Wood, "I lost my husband on November 4th 1998 in Baltimore City."  Martha's husband, Flight Officer Barry Wood, was killed when the helicopter he was piloting crashed during a chase of a stolen vehicle.

Sue Nickerson's son, president of the Maryland chapter of Concerns Of Police Survivors (C.O.P.S.) became involved with the organization on February 13, 2001, when her son, 24 year old Patrolman Michael Nickerson and his partner, from the Centreville Police Department were shot and killed after responding to a noise complaint.

"By the time we got to the hospital that night, there were other members of C.O.P.S. there at the hospital, so we just drew off of their strength," says Nickerson.

Sprinkled among the crowd of survivors, celebrating their fallen heroes were children and teens, including Rachel Platt, who's father, Sergeant John D. Platt Sr. died when his patrol car was broadsided at an intersection by a drunk driver.  Platt and his partner were on routine patrol in a residential area when the driver of the pickup truck failed to obey a stop sign and caused the collision.

Just three years old when she lost her father, Rachel says one reason she comes to the annual retreat in Ocean City is to connect with other kids like her, "I just come because I like helping with the little kids because I've been there."

While many of the names and faces on posters, stuck in the sand and surrounded by roses are of officers killed while in the line of duty, this year, the group is also remembering Ocean City Police Officers Tommy Geoghegan Jr. and Joshua Adickes, who died when Geoghegan Jr.'s plane crashed into the ocean, just off the beach in June.

Though their deaths didn't happen while on duty, organizers felt it was their responsibility to honor their law enforcement brothers.

Sue Nickerson says "we like to call it our Thin Blue Line of brotherhood.  It doesn't matter what agency you're from, it's just a special family."

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