Soldiers help support fallen police officers

17th Public Affairs Detachment
Story by Sgt. Memory Strickland

Date: 11.29.2012
Posted: 12.05.2012 16:50
News ID: 98791
Soldiers help support fallen police officers

LAKEWOOD, Wash. – “They have supported us through so much. Now it’s our turn to return the support,” said Spc. Cody Hanks, an Everett, Wash., native, now a combat engineer with 570th Sapper Company, 14th Engineer Battalion. <br /> <br /> Hanks and approximately 20 other soldiers with 555th Engineer Brigade volunteered during the 3rd Annual Lakewood Fallen Officers Food Drive at the city’s police department Nov. 29. <br /> <br /> The food drive kicked off with a performance by the Seattle Police Pipes and Drums. <br /> <br /> “Today is a significant day because it’s the third anniversary of four fallen Lakewood police officers,” said Officer Ryan Gallagher, founder of the Seattle Police Pipes and Drums. <br /> <br /> The drive is in honor of four Lakewood officers who were killed at a coffee shop in Parkland in 2009. <br /> <br /> “This is a continuation of the healing process for the community,” said Helen McGovern, executive director of Emergency Food Network. <br /> <br /> Soldiers supported the drive with enthusiasm. They waved at cars driving by and held signs to direct traffic to the donation site. <br /> <br /> “The energy of the soldiers is wonderful,” McGovern said. <br /> <br /> Gina Miller, a dispatcher with Washington State Patrol, donated cases of food to support the event. Her fiance, a Washington State Patrol officer, was killed in the line of duty in February. <br /> <br /> “This is a way to give back to the community and it helps me get through the holidays,” said Miller. <br /> <br /> “It’s nice to see the community supporting the police officers,” said Staff Sgt. Ricky Ellis, a Flint, Mich., native, now a combat engineer with the sapper company. <br /> <br /> “We have a mutual love between Lakewood and the military,” McGovern said.