Our police, fire, and other emergency workers are no less than heroes. When one falls in the line of duty, it seems appropriate to honor their memory in recognition of their service to protect and to serve our communities.
KTAR reports that such a fallen hero is being honored along “Hero Lane” in Phoenix as of Monday. Phoenix Police Officer Paul Rutherford, who was killed in the line of duty in March. His banner joins those of other fallen police officers and firefighters along Baseline Road between 35th and 51st Avenue and on Washington Street between 7th Street and 9th Avenue.
Officer Rutherford was struck and killed by a motorist in west Phoenix while he was at the scene of a previous accident at the intersection of 75th Avenue and Indian School Road. Officer Rutherford is survived by his wife Jocelyn and their two children. Rutherford was with the Phoenix Police Department for 23 years.
A ceremony was held on May 13th in front of City Hall to honor Officer Rutherford. City Council members Michael Nowakowski and Felicita Mendoza and members of Rutherford’s family were in attendance. Nowakowski said in his remarks that the city’s Hero Lane was an opportunity to, “….thank those firefighters, those police officers that serve and protect our community, the people we call when we need help.”
An event was also held to honor the city’s fallen heroes in Cesar Chavez Park on Saturday from 3-9 p.m. The event featured live music, a fireworks display, and a candlelight ceremony along with other family-oriented activities.
The City of Phoenix will leave the banners on display on both roadways until July 6th.