The 140 law enforcement officers who died in 2016 throughout the country were honored Wednesday in a remembrance ceremony in front of the Centre County Courthouse.
Officers from across the county, as well as cadets from the Penn State law enforcement program, filled the front courtyard as local police officers and government officials spoke of the lives lead by these civil servants.
Spring Township police Chief Michael Danneker delivered the opening remarks, saying while every officer who had died wore a different badge, they all had one thing in common — their desire to protect and serve. Each possessed service in his or her heart and knew the risk of their commitment, he said.
Sen. Jake Corman, R-Benner Township, spoke of the uncertainty of working in law enforcement, saying his life remains fairly predictable when it comes to the men and women in police uniforms who may not know if they will make it home that night.
Corman also spoke of a loss near home, noting the death of Huntingdon County state police Trooper Landon Weaver near the end of 2016. The loss of a trooper like Weaver means more than just the loss of an officer, he said, but the loss of a future hoped for by Weaver and his wife.
Each name of the 140 officers was read aloud, spanning across the country and multiple law enforcement disciplines. Four — Weaver, corrections Officer Kristopher Moules, corrections Officer David Weaver and police Officer Scott Bashioum — were from Pennsylvania.
A bagpipe rendition of “Amazing Grace” and a 21-gun salute followed the reading of the names.