• Photo by Tony Pilkington
    Stephens County and Breckenridge law enforcement and government officials and other visitors joined employees of the TDJC Walker Sayle Unit Thursday morning for a memorial ceremony to honor fallen correctional officers. The event was held as part of National Correctional Officer Week. Click on the arrows on either side of the photo to see more photos.
  • Photo by Tony Pilkington
    TDCJ Correctional Officer Brandi Collins lights a memorial candle on the "Missing Officer" table during the Fallen Officer Memorial Service at the Walker Sayle Unit.
  • Photo by Tony Pilkington
    A TDCJ correctional officer bows his head during the Fallen Officer Memorial Service held at the Walker Sayle Unit as part of National Correctional Officer Week.
  • Photo by Tony Pilkington
    TDCJ correctional officers join in with Stephens County and Breckenridge law enforcement, government officials and other visitors to sing "Blessed Assurance" during the fallen officers' ceremony.
  • Photo by Tony Pilkington
    Brad Fisk sings "Amazing Grace" during the ceremony to remember fallen correctional officers at the Walker Sayles Unit on Thursday.
  • Photo by Tony Pilkington
    TDCJ Captain Deborah Plunk explains what the "Missing Officer" table is and what each of the items on the table symbolizes during a ceremony Thursday at the Walker Sayle Unit honoring fallen correctional offices.
  • By Tony Pilkington
    Misty Griffith reads the poem "When God Made Correction Officers" during the Fallen Officer Memorial Ceremony at the Walker Sayle Unit.
  • Photo by Tony Pilkington
    Chaplain Tom Moore leads visitors in the singing of "Blessed Assurance" during a ceremony for fallen correction officers at the Walker Sayle Unit Thursday morning. The “Missing Officer” table and empty chair can be seen next to the stage. The table which is set for one is a symbolic representation of correctional staff members who have given their lives in the line of duty.
  • Photo by Tony Pilkington
    TDCJ correctional officers at the Walker Sayle Unit listen during a ceremony for fallen correctional officers Thursday. Stephens County and Breckenridge law enforcement and government officials along with other visitors joined employees of the TDCJ Walker Sayle Unit for the ceremony.
  • Photo by Tony Pilkington
    Symbolic items sit atop the "Missing Officer" table during the ceremony for fallen officers at the Walker Sayle Unit Thursday morning. The round table design, along with each of the items on top of the table, has a symbolic meaning for correctional officers who lost their lives in the line of duty.

Fallen Officer Memorial Ceremony held at Walker Sayle Unit

Service part of National Correctional Officer Week

Stephens County and Breckenridge law enforcement and government officials joined employees of the TDCJ Walker Sayle Unit Thursday morning for a memorial ceremony to honor fallen correctional officers.  The event was part of National Correctional Officer Week.  

Near the stage, set up under a large tent on the prison grounds, was a small round table called the “Missing Officer” table and an empty chair.  Displayed on the table were several items that symbolized the “Missing Officer."

Standing on the stage, TDCJ Captain Deborah Plunk read aloud an explanation of what each of the items on the table represented.

“Set for one, the empty place represents Correctional Staff who have given their lives in the line of duty defending society while maintaining incarcerated felons.

“The table is round to show our everlasting concern for our missing loved ones.

“The tablecloth is white, which symbolizes the purity of their motives while answering the call of duty. The sword symbolizes honor.

“The single red rose displayed in a vase, reminds us of the life of each of these missing loved ones and friends of these correctional staff who keep the faith.

“The vase and yellow ribbon. The vase is tied with a yellow ribbon, a symbol of our continued determination to remember and ‘take care of our own.’

“A slice of lemon reminds us of the bitter fate of those killed or crippled while protecting society.

“A pinch of salt symbolizes the tears endured by those missing and their families who seek answers.

“The Bible represents the strength gained through faith to sustain those of us that continue on.

“The glass inverted symbolizes their inability to share this day’s toast.

“The chair is empty. They are missing."   

Also during the ceremony there was a Roll Call of all TDCJ Officers who have died in the line of duty and officers from across the nation who have died during the past year. As each name was read off, Jerry Davidson rang a bell.   

The Breckenridge American

BRECKENRIDGE OFFICE

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Breckenridge, Texas 76424

Phone: (254) 559-5412
Fax: (254) 559-3491