STEUBENVILLE - Area police officers will gather at 9 a.m. Friday with family, friends and strangers to remember their fallen brothers in blue who have been killed in the line of duty.
Retired Steubenville police Sgt. Bob Spence attends the memorial services every year.
"Several of us started the first police memorial week here in 1964, and I am glad to see it is continuing," explained Spence.
REMEMBERING THE FALLEN — Police officers from throughout Jefferson County have been invited to attend Police Memorial Day services at 9 a.m. Friday at the flagpole near the Historic Fort Steuben Visitors Center. Fraternal Order of Police Lodge No. 1 Chaplain Shawn Scott said law enforcement personnel and local officials will remember the six Steubenville police officers, one officer from Toronto and two police officers from Mingo Junction who lost their lives in the line of duty. Standing in front of the wall plaque marking the names of the six Steubenville police officers killed in the line of duty are, from left, Capt. John Young, Capt. Joel Walker, Sgt. Sam Boniey and Patrolman Shawn Scott. -- Dave Gossett
"We will have law enforcement representatives from are police departments along with city and county officials. City Manager Cathy Davison will sing at the ceremony. And we are inviting area citizens to join us for a few minutes to remember the officers who put their lives on the line and did not return safely," said Fraternal Order of Police Lodge No. 1 Chaplain Shawn Scott.
Scott will read the names of the fallen police officers during the service. The list includes:
- Patrolman John L. McDonald, Steubenville Police Department. End of Watch Jan. 8, 1908.
According to a Jan. 8, 1908, edition of the Steubenville Herald-Star the 38-year-old McDonald became the first Steubenville policeman to die while on duty the night of Jan. 7, 1908, when he was shot and instantly killed by Milovan Dodic during a New Year's celebration.
- Patrolman Lafayette Mercer, Steubenville Police Department. End of watch July 2, 1914.
Mercer died on July 2, 1914, after he was sent to arrest Albert L. Johnson, a local barber who lived on Adams Street.
The Herald-Star reported Mercer had been sent to the domestic disturbance scene because he was friends with Johnson. After several minutes of discussion a shoot out started and both men died from their wounds
- Patrolman William J. Snider, Mingo Junction Police Department. End of watch Jan. 26, 1923.
According to Scott, Snider was walking a suspect to the police station when the suspect shot and killed him.
- Patrolman Owen Burns, Steubenville Police Department. End of Watch Nov. 7, 1926. Lt. Scott Roe, Steubenville Police Department. End of watch April 12, 1928.
- Lt. Michael J. Maguschak Sr., Mingo Junction Police Department. End of watch Dec. 30, 1970.
Maguschak was investigating a burglary when he was shot by Donald Nickerson.
- Patrolman Leonard Lamatrice, Steubenville Police Department. End of watch July 21, 1972. Patrolman Thomas McGough, Steubenville Police Department. End of watch Aug. 6, 1972.
Both men died after they investigated a gasoline tanker truck that had lost its brakes on Stoney Hollow Boulevard (now University Boulevard).
Ralph Benton Miller Sr., Toronto Police Department. End of watch March 26, 1978.
According to Scott, "Miller and his partner had set up a road block in an attempt to stop a reckless driver being chased by other police officers. He was struck by the vehicle and died 10 days later."
"We will observe Police Memorial Week from Friday until May 19. The Steubenville City Council is expected to approve the resolution marking Police Memorial Day at the Tuesday council meeting," said Scott.
"We are really hoping for the public to join us Friday morning. It means a lot to us to know we have the support of our community," added Scott.
"Our law enforcement officers have been and will continue to be reminded of the need to be vigilant. The line of duty deaths actually increased last year. We serve and protect our citizens. And we appreciate their support," said Scott.