The Washington State Patrol (WSP) dedicated a new memorial last week to the nine Troopers who paid the ultimate sacrifice while faithfully serving the citizens of Washington in King County— the region with the most line of duty deaths in the state.
Right outside the WSP District 2 office in Bellevue, Chief John Batiste unveiled a newly erected marble monument reading “Dedicated to our King County Troopers who made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty.”
While opening the dedication ceremony, Captain Ron Mead, District 2 Commander, said “It is our hope that this memorial will forever be a visual reminder to those visiting this office, whether they are members of the public, current WSP employees, retirees or most importantly the families that endured the incredible loss of these fallen heroes. Their duty was to serve; our duty is to remember…”
After an invocation from Chaplain Darryl Russell, Lieutenant Jacobson read the roll call for: Clarence Johnson, Paul Johnson, Allen Ludden, Irving Thorsvig, Cliff Hansell, Steven Frink, William Pautzke, Loren Ray, and Glenda Thomas. As each name was read, a family member or current Trooper presented an individual raised plaque bearing the name of the fallen.
The new, interactive memorial lies on what was once an area covered with weeds, vegetation, and dirt. Now, sitting on the east side of the District 2 Campus, lays a beautiful landscaped memorial that will be around for generations to come. In addition to the newly erected monuments on the ground level, a permanent banner bearing the image of the Washington State Patrol Honor Guard and the words “Their duty was to serve. Our duty is to remember,” will forever look over the fallen and those who come to pay their respects. This ceremony and new memorial could not have been done without the generous help of volunteers, companies, foundations, and individuals. With their contributions, we have a dedicated place to remember and honor these fallen nine.