National Police Remembrance Day 2020 will look different this year as police across the nation unite in previously unthought-of ways to honour the lives of their colleagues who have died in the line of duty.
Victoria Police is inviting the community to join police in paying tribute to fallen police officers through a special online memorial service via the Victoria Police YouTube, which will be available from 10am on 29 September 2020.
A virtual Facebook event has also been created especially for this occasion. The memorial service will remain online after its conclusion for those unable to join at the time.
Keeping with tradition, Chief Commissioner Shane Patton will mark the occasion with a special wreath-laying ceremony at the Police Memorial Honour Wall. The Wall lists 170 police officers who have made the ultimate sacrifice whilst serving their community since Victoria Police was established in 1853.
During the service, we will remember and honour the lives of the 23 police members, Protective Services Officers, Police Custody Officers and Victorian Public Servants who have passed away since National Police Remembrance Day 2019.
This year we have the sad duty of adding the names of Leading Senior Constable Lynette Taylor, Senior Constable Kevin King, Constable Josh Prestney and Constable Glen Humphris, who were tragically killed in the line of duty in April this year. CCP Patton will unveil their plaque on the Police Memorial Honour Wall, where it will serve as a permanent reminder of their dedication and sacrifice.
“While the pandemic has forced us to change the way we usually unite to honour our fallen colleagues, one thing remains the same. We will never forget the ultimate sacrifices our fellow police officers have made while serving our community,” CCP Patton said ahead of the event.
“Every National Police Remembrance Day, we remember. But 2020 marks a significant tragedy in Victoria Police history when we lost four of our own in one heartbreaking incident.
“We remember police officers like Lynette, Kevin, Josh and Glen and those before them, who have tragically died while keeping fellow Victorians safe. There is no higher price.
“The impact of their deaths continues to be felt throughout the community, and by our police family both interstate and internationally.
“While the annual National Police Remembrance Day commemorative march and in-person service cannot take place, police officers across the country will today pause and remember the colleagues we have lost.
“National Police Remembrance Day is a powerful annual reminder of the risks our police officers bravely face in carrying out their duties. Every day more than 16,000 Victorian police and more than 1,500 Protective Services Officers put on their uniform and face the dangers the job presents, steadfast in their dedication to serve the community.”