SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Ten fallen officers joined the names of more than 1,600 law enforcement officers on the California Peace Officers' Memorial.
Half of the recognized 2018 officers were serving Northern California areas like Newman, Riverbank, Rancho Cordova and Solano County. That’s four officers who left behind families and loved ones after falling in the line of duty.
“These families have endured unspeakable tragedy and bravely soldiered on with an empty seat at birthdays, and big games, and dance recitals, and at the dinner table…,” Gov. Gavin Newsom said.
Thousands of officers across California were in attendance to honor the officers who fell and support the families they left behind.
The 2018 honorees were:
Deputy City Marshal Maurice Halloran, Vernon Police Department
- EOW: Nov. 15, 1913
Deputy Henry V. Snowbelt, Lake County Sheriff’s Department
- EOW: Oct. 2, 1937
Deputy Steven E. Belanger, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department
- EOW: Feb 6, 2018
Officer Greggory Casillas, Pomona Police Department
- EOW: Mar 9, 2018
Deputy Sheriff Ryan Zirkle, Marin County Sheriff's Office
- EOW: Mar 15, 2018
Officer Kirk Griess, CHP – Solano Area Office
- EOW: Aug 10, 2018
Deputy Mark Stasyuk, Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department
- EOW: Sep 17, 2018
Sergeant Ron Helus, Ventura County Sheriff’s Office
- EOW: Nov 8, 2018
Deputy Tony Hinostroza III, Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department
- EOW: Nov 25, 2018
Corporal Ronil Singh, Newman Police Department
- EOW: Dec 26, 2018
Among the speakers were Gov. Gavin Newsom, Attorney General Xavier Becerra, and California Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye. But it was the police chief of a small town of a little more than 11,000 people that captivated everyone's attention.
Newman Police Chief Randy Richardson took the stage, speaking about the death of Corporal Ronil Singh. Singh’s death launched a multi-county manhunt for his alleged killer and shook both the small community and department.
“If I could go back in time and make you all forget where Newman was or that you’ve even heard of Newman, I would because that means I would bring Ron back,” Richardson said.
Singh is remembered as a hero in his home town.
“Part of me knows, this is how Ron would want to be remembered. He died a hero,” Richardson said.
The ceremony saw officers and family take the Walk of Honor to the memorial wall and lay a rose for their fallen loved one.
Each of the fallen California officers were memorialized on Monday with a bronze plaque on the monument.
“It hits a little closer to home for some rather than others every year,” Kevin Mickelson, California Peace Officer Memorial Foundation president, told ABC10.
“For me, yes [it is more emotional],” he added. “It is because it’s my own department [regarding Deputy Stasyuk], but it’s always going to be somebody’s department."
The death of Deputy Tony Hinostroza left the Stanislaus County Sheriff's Department reeling in the wake of their sixth line of duty death in six years. Sheriff Adam Christianson explains the heartbreak the department shared over the years and how they come together.