Three fallen officers from Routt County to be honored for National Police Week |

Three fallen officers from Routt County to be honored for National Police Week

Steamboat Pilot & Today

The Steamboat Springs Police Department and Routt County Sheriff’s Office will honor three fallen law enforcement officers for National Police Week, which runs from May 11-17 this year and recognizes officers who lost their lives in the line of duty.

“Every day our peace officers put their lives on the line when they pin on the badge to protect the community,” Steamboat Springs Police Chief Sherry Burlingame said in a news release. “We know the risks our officers and those across the nation face daily and it is important we pay respect and honor those who paid the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty. We will never forget their service or their sacrifice.”

The sheriff’s office and SSPD will host a remembrance ceremony at 9 a.m., Wednesday, May 11. The event will take place outside of the Combined Law Enforcement Facility, 2027 Shield Drive, followed by a reception.

The Routt County Sheriff’s Office and SSPD have three law enforcement members who have been killed in the line of duty over the past 125 years, including two sheriff’s office deputies and one officer with Steamboat Springs Police Department.

Deputized civilian Val Hoy was shot and killed March 1, 1898, while riding with a posse attempting to arrest a man wanted for cattle rustling and the shooting of a teenage boy on a ranch near Rock Springs, Wyoming. Hoy was a Union Army veteran of the Civil War.

Deputy Sheriff Charles Gibbs, Sr., was killed March 21, 1929, when he was caught in an avalanche 22 miles northwest of Steamboat Springs while on his way to serve papers to two miners. A search party found his body under tons of snow the next day. Gibbs was a U.S. Army veteran of WWI.

Officer James Chew was shot and killed July 28, 1972, by an escapee from a Washington state prison. The suspect had been the focus of a manhunt in the area for several days. Officer Chew was a U.S. Marine Corps veteran and had served with the Steamboat Springs Police Department for four years.

National Peace Officers Memorial Day is May 15 every year, and the calendar week in which the day falls is recognized as National Police Week.

According to the Officer Down Memorial Page, Oak Creek Town Marshal Clem Eller also died in the line of duty. Eller’s end of watch came on Nov. 6, 1927.

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