Marshfield, WI (OnFocus) The Marshfield Professional Police Association (M.P.P.A.) will hold a public Peace Officers Memorial Day event on May 16.
“Peace Officer Memorial Day is a day (and week) where we acknowledge the risks that are involved in law enforcement and honor those who have sacrificed their lives while protecting their communities,” said Lt. Dennis Keffer, organizer.
The 30-minute service will include a 21-gun salute by the Marshfield Police Honor Guard and department awards, followed by a complimentary meal of brats and burgers where members of the public will have the chance to meet with their local officers.
“It is important for a community to recognize the challenges of law enforcement, so they know how they would like their law enforcement to function,” said Keffer. “The event is meaningful for our department because it is our rare opportunity to gather together with our families, since we all work different shifts and often don’t get a chance to get together as a group.”
The department will celebrate the successes of the previous year by awarding the Fred A. Beell award to retired officers David Mattheisen and Dan Leonard for serving over 25 years.
Wisconsin officers who died in the line of duty in 2018 will be honored. They are Charles J. Irvine Jr. and Michael J. Michalski of the Milwaukee Police Department.
Additionally, the event pays tribute to the first and only Marshfield police officer to be killed in the line of duty. Fred Beell was shot and killed while responding to a burglary at Marshfield Brewery on August 5, 1933.
Originally from West Prussia, Beell was a member of the Wisconsin National Guard and found success as a professional wrestler before joining the police department in 1921.
The event starts at 6:30 at Wildwood Park and will be live-streamed to the Marshfield OnFocus Facebook page.