JEFFERSON CITY - Law enforcement from around Missouri gathered at the State Capitol in Jefferson City Saturday to honor two officers who died in the line of duty during 2013 and two who died in past years.
The Law Enforcement Memorial in Jefferson City added Detective Christopher C. Simpson from the Chesterfield Police Department and Officer Joseph C. Smith, also from the Chesterfield Police Department to its wall. Both officers died in 2013. The wall also added Iberia Police Department Officer Vernon O. Winn and Missouri Pacific Railroad Police Department Watchman Edward Bell, both of whom died in years past.
Families of the officers honored this year and of officers who died in the line of duty in years past came together to add flowers to the memorial wreath. Law enforcement agencies from around the state also laid wreaths to honor the fallen.
"Those who devote their lives to law enforcement are charged with a simple yet solemn oath: ‘to preserve and defend the peace of our communities, and the lives of our citizens,'" Attorney General Chris Koster said. "There is no greater responsibility on this earth. And what greater proof of commitment to that oath could we than the sacrifices of the men we honor here today."
Friday, a candlelight vigil was held in honor of all of the Missouri law enforcement officers who have died in the line of duty.