Fallen law enforcement officers to be honored during virtual candlelight vigil on May 13

By: Andres Irlando

National Police Week signature event to take place virtually in response to COVID-19 public health crisis

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The annual National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund Candlelight Vigil will take place virtually this year due to the COVID-19 public health crisis. For over 30 years, the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund has held a Candlelight Vigil to honor those who have died in the line of duty. This year, the names of fallen U.S. law enforcement officers will be formally dedicated on the walls of the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial during a virtual Candlelight Vigil on Wednesday, May 13 at 8 p.m. ET. The vigil will be broadcast via Verizon Media’s BUILD by Yahoo Series and on its social platforms Facebook and Twitter, @VZUpToSpeed and LawMemorial.org.

The virtual broadcast will replace the traditional Candlelight Vigil ceremony held on the National Mall, which draws more than 30,000 first responders, surviving families, and law enforcement supporters annually. The 2020 ceremony will include special remarks by more than 50 guests including the Honorable Chad Wolf, Acting Secretary, U.S. Department of Homeland Security; the Honorable Steny Hoyer, Majority Leader, U.S. House of Representatives; Dermot Shea, New York Police Commissioner; Cerelyn J. Davis, National President, National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives; Patrick Yoes, National President, Fraternal Order of Police; Tom Selleck, Joe Mantegna and John Walsh, and the chief executives of some of the nation’s Fortune 500 corporations, all paying tribute to the fallen U.S. law enforcement officers.

During the virtual Candlelight Vigil, the names of each of the 307 men and women that will be added to the National Law Enforcement Memorial this year will be read aloud in memory of their sacrifice. Those tuning into the vigil can also visit a web app to view the full list of fallen officers, with their name, rank and photo.

Honoring the Fallen Amidst the Global Pandemic

“The current health crisis we are facing will not deter us from honoring the fallen,” said National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund CEO Marcia Ferranto. “By holding the annual Candlelight Vigil virtually, we have created an opportunity for the entire nation to light candles and stand in solidarity and support of the surviving families and law enforcement agencies. This is also an opportunity for the public at large to learn about the depth and breadth of the service and sacrifice of American law enforcement.”

Located in Washington, D.C., the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial is a living monument to ensure the men and women who died in the line of duty will never be forgotten. The 307 names being engraved on the Memorial’s walls this year will be added to the 21,910 fallen officers already there, representing 50 states, the District of Columbia, U.S. territories, federal law enforcement, and military police agencies.

Uniting to Pay Tribute to Law Enforcement Officers

Verizon is partnering with the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund as lead sponsor and broadcast partner. The live event will be streamed on Verizon Media’s BUILD by Yahoo Series and @VZUpToSpeed Twitter account.

“It's a privilege to partner with the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund to help support the virtual Candlelight Vigil,” said Andrés Irlando, Senior Vice President and President, Public Sector and Verizon Connect at Verizon. “Now more than ever, it's important to keep this powerful tradition alive as we honor those who have made the ultimate sacrifice and celebrate the women and men who risk their lives every day on the front lines to protect our communities.”

With the Candlelight Vigil broadcast virtually, anyone can join the ceremony in solidarity and support. Individuals can embrace the spirit of the Candlelight Vigil by participating in United by Light, where they can pay tribute to a law enforcement officer by lighting a virtual candle in respect, honor, or remembrance. Virtual candles can be lit now to show appreciation for officers serving on the front lines keeping our nation safe during our current health crisis, on May 13 to honor a fallen officer, or any time of year to remember anniversaries, academy graduations, birthdays, special occasions, or just to say thank you for all law enforcement officers do to keep our communities safe.

For more information on the virtual Candlelight Vigil on May 13 at 8 p.m. ET, visit LawMemorial.org.

About the National Law Enforcement Memorial and Museum

Established in 1984, the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund is a non-profit organization dedicated to telling the story of American law enforcement and making it safer for those who serve. The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial contains the names of 22,217 officers who have died in the line of duty throughout U.S. history. For more information about the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial, visit LawMemorial.org. Authorized by Congress in 2000, the 57,000-square-foot National Law Enforcement Museum at the Motorola Solutions Foundation Building tells the story of American law enforcement by providing visitors a “walk in the shoes” experience along with educational journeys, immersive exhibitions, and insightful programs. The Museum is an initiative of the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, a 501(c)(3) organization. For more information on the Law Enforcement Museum, visit LawEnforcementMuseum.org.

For related media inquiries, please contact story.inquiry@one.verizon.com

About the author:

Andrés Irlando is senior vice president of Verizon and president of both Verizon Connect and public sector for the Verizon Business Group. Andrés began his career at Verizon in 2005 and has held a variety of roles. Andrés earned a doctor of jurisprudence from Stanford Law School and a bachelor’s degree from Harvard College. He also served eight years as an intelligence officer in the United States Navy Reserve.

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