Columbus police hold memorial for officers killed in line of duty
COLUMBUS, Ohio (WSYX/WTTE) -- Heavy hearts were at Genoa Park where Columbus police honored its fallen officers during a memorial service.
You could see and hear the emotion, especially among those close to fallen Columbus SWAT Officer Steve Smith.
Officers and loved ones lit candles for the 56 men and women who've died in the line of duty. They also recognized fallen Kirkersville Police Chief Steven Eric DiSario.
The thin blue line mourned fallen brothers and sisters.
"The longing in our heart is something we will never forget," said Columbus Police Chief Kim Jacobs.
It also had words of remembrance.
"Steve Smith was a special guy. There's not many people who can call themselves a pilot, diver, SWAT officer, great cook," said Columbus Police Sgt. Joe Podolski.
Smith died last April after being shot during a standoff. His legacy was how he tirelessly trained for the unexpected.
"Your training Is never complete," said Sgt. Podolski.
There were also prayers on the night for the loved ones of DiSario, who was shot and killed nearly one week ago.
The Columbus Police Honor Guard just got back from Washington, DC, after adding Officer Smith's name to the national wall. For the next two days, they'll honor DiSario at his funeral.
"It's extremely difficultm especialy if you knew the person. There's names on that wall I personally knew and those don't get any easier," said Sgt. Rich Brooks, Columbus Police Honor Guard President.
Kindra O'Rielley said being an officer's wife is also not easy.
"You try not to think about it. You're just grateful when they walk through the door at night," said O'Rielley.
On Thursday night, the thoughts were with those who didn't make it home, but will never be forgotten.