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Area law enforcement officers commemorate fallen colleagues

Hundreds of local law enforcement officers marched in uptown Charlotte on Friday morning as part of the annual ceremony to commemorate peace officers killed in the line of duty.

The uniformed officers gathered in front of the fallen police memorial at the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department headquarters to watch as family members of deceased officers prayed at the site.

They stood at attention as a 21-gun salute rang out through the center city.

Then the group marched down South Davidson Street to First Baptist Church for a service memorializing those lost loved ones.

A list of 37 officers from around Mecklenburg County who have died while on the job was printed in the ceremony pamphlets.

“While we mourn all of them, no one feels they’re passing each and every day as you do,” John A. Strong, the special agent in charge at the FBI’s Charlotte division, said to the family members at the ceremony.

Mecklenburg County Sheriff Chipp Bailey said events like Friday’s help bring the law enforcement community together.

“You see blue uniforms, brown and green uniforms, gray uniforms and those in suits and ties,” Bailey said of the assortment of public safety officers gathered at CMPD headquarters before the march. “But we’re all one family.”

Steele: 704-358-5067 on Twitter: @steelecs
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