Stamford hosts fallen officer ceremony for National Police Week

The names of 31 fallen officers were read.

Marissa Alter

May 14, 2024, 1:57 AM

Updated 7 days ago


Stamford police on Monday hosted one of many gatherings going on across the country for National Police Week, honoring officers who've died in the line of duty.
The somber ceremony in front of the department’s headquarters first was held in 2005 to remember the four city officers who made the ultimate sacrifice between 1938 and 1973: Officer George Kelly, Officer Andrew Schlechtweg, Officer David Troy and Officer William McNamara. Over the years, police departments throughout Fairfield County and the state have joined in, bringing their K-9, motorcycle and honor guard units.
“In our profession, there is no such thing as a routine call. That's because we find out day in and day out officers are being killed while they respond to what they thought was a routine call,” said Stamford Police Chief Timothy Shaw, addressing the gathering. “I started my career on April 25, 1988. Since that time, we have lost 29 officers in Connecticut and 6,969 across the country.”
The names of 31 fallen officers were read: heroes from Stamford police, Bridgeport police, Fairfield police, Norwalk police, Greenwich police, Westport police, Darien police, New Canaan police, Danbury police, Newtown police, Bristol police and Hartford police.
They included Hartford Detective Bobby Garten, who was killed in September when his cruiser was hit by a fleeing vehicle. The ceremony also recognized Bristol Police Lt. Dustin DeMonte and Sgt. Alex Hamzy, who died in an ambush attack while responding to a disturbance call in October 2022. A third officer with them, Officer Alec Iurato, was injured in the barrage of gunfire but fired a single shot to kill the suspect. Iurato’s parents live in Stamford and were at the ceremony, as well, where their son’s bravery was acknowledged.
“This is a dangerous profession, something we all know when we have our badge first pinned on us. But with that risk comes reward,” Shaw said.
Stamford’s mayor also took part in the tribute, reflecting on all the officers who continue to put themselves in danger daily.
“Being a police officer today is an increasingly challenging job. It demands courage, compassion, and devotion to serving the public good,” said Mayor Caroline Simmons. “Today and every day let us keep these law enforcement officers in our hearts and let their memory be a reminder of the tremendous sacrifices they make every day.”

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