JWC Sheriff's Deputy Lt. Cosme Castillo and APD Cpl. Margarito Perez laid a wreath in honor of fallen officers Thursday. Photo by CHRISTOPHER MAHER

Ceremony held in honor of those killed in the line of duty

Christopher Maher, Alice Echo-News Journal

Jim Wells County and City of Alice officials, as well as law enforcement representatives from across the area, gathered in front of the Jim Wells County Sheriff's Department Thursday morning to honor those who gave the ultimate sacrifice in law enforcement.

The ceremony was held in honor of National Law Enforcement Week, joining similar ceremonies across the country.

The Alice Law Enforcement Explorers opened the ceremony with a presentation of the flags, followed by an opening prayer from Father Reynaldo Yrlas Jr. Master of Ceremony Mike Smith introduced Jim Wells County Sheriff Oscar Lopez and Alice Police Chief Danny Bueno, the special speakers for the event.

Sheriff Lopez read "The Policeman's Prayer" to those in attendance.

"Lord, I ask for courage; courage to face and conquer my own fears, courage to take me where others will not go," Lopez said. "Give me, Lord concern for all those who trust in me and compassion for those who need me, and please, Lord, through it all be at my side."

Bueno recognized the sacrifice of not just those who wear a badge in law enforcement, but the families of those who serve.

"That is the other half that is not recognized by a lot of people," Bueno said. "I know when we lose a police officer it stays in our mind and hurts us forever, but the other half helps us with the healing process."

Alice Mayor Pro-tem Juan Rodriguez Jr., whose father was a former chief of police for the City of Alice, read a proclamation in honor of National Law Enforcement week.

As the Alice High School band played softly, a wreath was presented by JWC Deputy Lt. Cosme Castillo and APD Officers Sgt. Richard DeLeon and Cpl. Margarito Perez, in honor of the sacrifice shown by fallen officers.

The Sheriff's Department and Alice Police Department Honor Guard gave a 21-gun salute, followed by "Taps," in honor of the fallen officers.

Pastor Javier Franco closed the ceremony with a prayer.