HomeNewsArticle Display

20th SFS recognizes Police Week

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Christopher Rippin, 20th Security Forces Squadron (SFS) installation entry controller, left, and Tech. Sgt. Justin Bell, 20th SFS standards and evaluation technician, participate in a National Police Week March for the Fallen at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., May 17, 2018.

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Christopher Rippin, 20th Security Forces Squadron (SFS) installation entry controller, left, and Tech. Sgt. Justin Bell, 20th SFS standards and evaluation technician, participate in a National Police Week March for the Fallen at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., May 17, 2018. In addition to the 9-mile ruck march, members of Team Shaw and the local community were also offered the opportunity to participate in activities such as opening and closing ceremonies, a 5K, and a Defenders Challenge. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kathryn R.C. Reaves)

Team Shaw members gather around a fallen Airmen memorial prior to a National Police Week opening ceremony at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., May 14, 2018.

Team Shaw members gather around a fallen Airmen memorial prior to a National Police Week opening ceremony at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., May 14, 2018. The memorial honored 14 Air Force law enforcement members who lost their lives while on duty since 2001. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kathryn R.C. Reaves)

U.S. Airmen assigned to the 20th Security Forces Squadron stand in formation during a National Police Week closing ceremony at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., May 18, 2018.

U.S. Airmen assigned to the 20th Security Forces Squadron stand in formation during a National Police Week closing ceremony at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., May 18, 2018. The Airmen conducted a 21-gun salute during the ceremony to honor law enforcement members who had been killed in the line of duty. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kathryn R.C. Reaves)

U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Derek Smiling, 20th Security Force Squadron flight sergeant, holds a U.S. flag prior to a National Police Week opening ceremony at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., May 14, 2018.

U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Derek Smiling, 20th Security Force Squadron flight sergeant, holds a U.S. flag prior to a National Police Week opening ceremony at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., May 14, 2018. The flag was flown throughout the week in honor of military and civilian police who lost their lives in the line of duty. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kathryn R.C. Reaves)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Ryan Libbon, 20th Security Forces Squadron installation patrolman, disassembles a cleared M240 machine gun while blindfolded during the National Police Week defender challenge at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., May 15, 2018.

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Ryan Libbon, 20th Security Forces Squadron installation patrolman, disassembles a cleared M240 machine gun while blindfolded during the National Police Week defender challenge at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., May 15, 2018. During the challenge, participants attempted to assemble and disassemble an M4 carbine as well as a M240 machine gun while blindfolded, while their partners guided them. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Christopher Maldonado)

U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Juan Gamboa, 20th Security Forces Squadron (SFS) military working dog (MWD) handler, stands behind Cigan, 20th SFS MWD, after a National Police Week 5K at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., May 17, 2018.

U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Juan Gamboa, 20th Security Forces Squadron (SFS) military working dog (MWD) handler, stands behind Cigan, 20th SFS MWD, after a National Police Week 5K at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., May 17, 2018. Team Shaw members gathered to compete for prizes during the event, which was designed to recognize and honor fallen law enforcement. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kathryn R.C. Reaves)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Patrick Formiller, 20th Security Forces Squadron flight sergeant, pushes a Humvee during the National Police Week Defenders Challenge at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., May 15, 2018.

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Patrick Formiller, 20th Security Forces Squadron flight sergeant, pushes a Humvee during the National Police Week Defenders Challenge at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., May 15, 2018. Teams of four pushed the Humvee 25 meters before continuing to the next station. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Christopher Maldonado)

SHAW AIR FORCE BASE, S.C. -- With humidity hanging in the morning air and the weight of their backpacks dragging them down, law enforcement members and supporters wiped sweat from their brows, ignoring their aching feet as they pressed on toward the completion of their 9-mile ruck march.

The March for the Fallen, which honored the memory of law enforcement members killed in the line of duty, was only one event hosted by the 20th Security Forces Squadron in honor of National Police Week, May 13-19.

“Police Week is a week to honor, reflect, mourn, pay respects and also recognize all of our fallen brothers and sisters in law enforcement, civilian and military,” said Staff Sgt. Katherine Silva, 20th SFS plans noncommissioned officer in charge. “Also, it gets us out there in a positive way because with everything that’s going on in the world … we’ve been getting a pretty bad light shone on us. This kind of lets people know ‘Hey, we’re human too.’”

Other events offered to Team Shaw members and local police included opening and closing ceremonies, a Defenders Challenge and a 5K. Some 20th SFS Defenders also used the week to join local schools for shadow programs.

To further educate the base populace about the week’s purpose, a memorial was on display which identified 14 fallen law enforcement Airmen lost in combat since 2001.

By displaying the names and biographies of these Airmen, 2nd Lt. John Colliver, 20th SFS day flight commander, said the memorial showed Team Shaw members why the week is observed and made their stories more real to the readers.

As the closing ceremony came to an end, the names and stories of the fallen read aloud and the flag folded in their honor, participants of the week’s activities left with a new understanding of the sacrifices police make.

Colliver said he hoped Police Week allowed them to have fun during its events, opened their eyes and, if nothing else, built connections between the community and law enforcement.