In the Line of Duty

The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund keeps statistics on law enforcement officers who have died in the line of duty – from those killed by gunfire while trying to arrest a criminal, to those killed in traffic accidents while on the job, to those who suffered heart attacks during training exercises.

As of July 25, 2011, the total number of law enforcement officer fatalities was 108 compared to 96 at the same time in 2010.

Here are a few of the recently fallen officers who were shot and killed while on duty:

Kyle Pagerly (Reading Eagle)Deputy Sheriff Kyle D. Pagerly, 28, was shot and killed on June 29, 2011, in Albany Township, Pennsylvania, while attempting to serve an arrest warrant.

His obit in the Reading (Pennsylvania) Eagle says:

He was a Canine Deputy Sheriff with the Berks County Sheriff's Department since 2006. He also worked part-time with the Western Berks Regional Police Department, the U.S. Marshals Task Force and was a lieutenant for the Spring Township Fire Department.

According to the obit, Deputy Sheriff Pagerly served with the Army Military Police in Kosovo and Iraq. He “also ran a marathon in 2010, completed numerous triathlons and was training for an Ironman Triathlon later this year.”

Timothy Felton (Commercial Appeal)Memphis Police Officer Timothy Felton Warren, 39, was shot and killed July 3, 2011, while responding to a domestic violence call.

According to the obituary published in the Memphis Commercial Appeal, Warren “received his bachelors from Delta State University where he was on the Mississippi All State Football Team.” He also “was a member of the Christian Motorcycle Association.”

He loved Blues Music and enjoyed an extensive collection. Picking a guitar and gun collecting were also hobbies, but most therapeutic was his workshop where he enjoyed metal work, leather work and welding. He made his own badge holders and holsters.

Sergeant Darrell Cervandez Curley, 48, of the Navajo Nation Police Department in Arizona, was shot and killed June 26, 2011, while responding to a domestic disturbance.

“He died as a warrior,” his family wrote for the obit that ran in the Farmington Daily Times.

Deputy Sheriff Roger Rice, 29, of Laurens County, South Carolina, was shot and killed July 14, 2011, while searching for a murder suspect.

He was the 44th law enforcement officer to be killed by gunfire in 2011.


This post was contributed by Alana Baranick, a freelance obituary writer who lives in Northeast Ohio. She is director of the Society of Professional Obituary Writers and chief author of Life on the Death Beat: A Handbook for Obituary Writers.