Posted at: 05/15/2013 7:05 AM
Updated at: 05/15/2013 8:03 PM
By: Leslie Dyste
Fallen Heroes Honored During Peace Officers Memorial Day
Law enforcement officers took part in a silent vigil at the State Police Memorial in St. Paul Wednesday.
Officers from across the state began their 20-minute shifts Tuesday, which continued until 7 p.m. Wednesday. The vigil is in honor of the 270 law enforcement officers who died in the line of duty in the state. The officers also focused on Officer Joshua Lynaugh. He died earlier this year from a health complication while chasing a suspect.
The Minneapolis Police Department and the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office on Wednesday honored officers who have died while serving their communities. A memorial ceremony was held in the City Hall rotunda, and a bell was rung in remembrance of each fallen officer in Hennepin County.
Minneapolis Police Chief Janee Harteau also talked about last week's shooting in which two officers were hurt and a suspect was killed.
At noon in Anoka, the Anoka County Sheriff’s Office held its own memorial service for fallen officers. It took place at the Anoka County Government Center Atrium. The public was encouraged to attend and show their support.
These events are part of National Police Week.
President Barack Obama also honored police officers killed in the line of duty, saying members of law enforcement never let down their guard and that the public they serve should "never let slide our gratitude."
Obama was speaking Wednesday at the National Peace Officers Memorial Service, an annual ceremony to remember those officers who died the previous year.
Among those Obama singled out was Bruce St. Laurent, a 20-year veteran of the Jupiter, Fla. police department killed last September when his motorcycle was struck during an Obama motorcade.
Obama said he is always mindful of the sacrifices made by police officers assigned to protect him and his family.
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The Associated Press contributed to this article.