Maryland’s police officers and firefighters who died in the line of duty, during the past year, will be honored at the 29th annual Fallen Heroes Day Ceremony–the only statewide ceremony in the nation that brings together all segments of the public safety community. The annual observance at Dulaney Valley Memorial Gardens salutes police and correctional officers, firefighters, emergency medical and rescue personnel who risk their lives to protect the citizens of Maryland and honors those who have died. In addition to state and local officials, and families of those being honored, more than 1,500 people are expected to attend the ceremony which opens with a parade of color guard units and concludes with a wreath laying, taps, and a flyover.
Since the May 2013 Fallen Heroes Day ceremony, three volunteer firefighters and a veteran police officer have died in the line of duty. They are:
Firefighter/EMT Gene Kirchner, Reisterstown Volunteer Fire Department, May 2, 2013
Officer Jason Schneider, Baltimore County Police Department, August 28, 2013
Captain David Barr, Jr., Community Fire Company of Perryville, Cecil County, November 7, 2013
Lt. James D. Brooks, Sr., Prince George’s County Volunteer Marine Fire Rescue, Inc., January15, 2014
Additionally, one police officer and one firefighter who died in the line of duty before Fallen Heroes Day was established in 1986, will be remembered and their family will be presented with a Governor’s Proclamation. This year’s ceremony will honor Trooper First Class William P. Mills, Jr. of the Maryland State Police Easton Barracks, who on June 8, 1979 was shot and killed while investigating a domestic complaint in Brookview, Dorchester County. Also being honored is Ocean City Volunteer Firefighter Jeffrey L. Dieter, Sr., who died responding to an early morning fire at the Saute Cafe on July 16, 1983. This tribute to the Mills and Dieter families will be made on behalf of all Maryland Fallen Hero survivors.
Fallen Heroes Day will be held Friday, May 2, 2014 at 1:00 p.m. Dulaney Valley Memorial Gardens is located at 200 East Padonia Road — one mile east of York Road, in Timonium, Maryland. The observance is free and open to the public. For more information: 410-666-0490 or www.dulaneyvalley.com.