NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – The National Peace Officers Memorial Service held in October honored more than 400 fallen heroes who died in the line of duty in 2019 and 2020 with President Biden giving the keynote address at the U.S. Capitol.
People from across the country and Middle Tennessee were in attendance as part of a week-long remembrance.
Members of the Brentwood Police Department joined the family and friends of Officer Destin Legieza who while on patrol was killed in June of 2020 by a driver going the wrong way.
Also present were members of the Hendersonville Police Department and family and friends of Master Patrol Officer Spencer Bristol, who was hit and killed during a pursuit on I-65 near Goodlettsville in 2019.
Members of the Cheatham County Sheriff’s Department and family and friends of Deputy Stephen Reece were also in attendance. Deputy Reece was killed in a multi-vehicle crash also in 2019 while on duty.
Sheriff Mike Breedlove of the Cheatham County Sheriff’s Department shares, “It’s never easy. It’s a difficult emotional wonderful experience in which you are in the epicenter of what this country stands for.”
Fallen heroes were each remembered at a candlelight vigil.
“Just to see his name you know called out within all of those heroes, I look at all of those people as heroes. It was I mean obviously bittersweet. It was surreal,” said Dan Bristol, the father of fallen Officer Spencer Bristol.
And these fallen heroes were immortalized at the National Law Enforcement Memorial.
“You know going in and seeing your son’s name etched in stone alongside so many, so many others who have paid the ultimate price. It was heartwarming. I mean it was obviously depressing at points to see and to think about the loss that you have, but it was heartwarming to see so many people show up,” said Dan Bristol.
“When I got to Destin’s name on the wall, obviously that was very moving. A lot of our officers just spent time kneeling at the wall and kind of feeling like you were spending a bit a time with him,” said Captain Jim Colvin of the Brentwood Police Department.
“It’s gratifying in that aspect that everyone up there did not die in vain and they gave the ultimate sacrifice,” said Sheriff Mike Breedlove.
It was a weeklong event of remembrances that brought people who loved these fallen heroes together to honor and heal.
“It’s one of the places in which no one wants to go to but everyone needs to -to appreciate our fallen heroes,” said Sheriff Breedlove.
“We really were just immersed in a lot of support and love and appreciation for the profession, for the families and the officers that we lost,” said Captain Colvin.
“I really want to thank everyone for everything that they’ve done to help honor our son and to continue to remember him,” said Dan Bristol.
So, we posthumously honor Brentwood Police Officer Destin Legieza, Master Patrol Officer Spencer Bristol, and Cheatham County Sheriff’s Deputy Stephen Reece as our News 2 Gives Back Hometown Heroes for the month of December, presented by Trevecca Nazarene University for their embodiment of the oath to serve and protect and their courage and compassion while serving their communities which will always be remembered.