Illinois Honors 7 Police Officers Killed in the Line of Duty
Press Release Date:
May 1, 2003
|| Archived May 7, 2003
SPRINGFIELD, IL – Seven Illinois law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty were honored today during Illinois Police Officers’ Memorial Day ceremonies at the state capitol. The fallen officers’ names will be added to the 849 names currently on the monument.
Five of the officers honored were killed during the past year. On January 17, 2002, Bellwood Police Department Detective Alvin Perez, Jr., 35, and his partner were transporting a murder witness to the police station when their squad car hit a patch of ice, veered out of control, and struck a median barrier. Perez died as a result of the accident. Perez, who had been on the force for 12 years, is survived by his wife and three children.
The second officer killed in the line of duty was 47-year-old Chicago Police Department Officer Donald J. Marquez. Marquez, a 20-year veteran, was serving a bench warrant at a residence on March 18, 2002, when he was shot twice in the chest and once in the head. He was rushed to the hospital but died the following day. Marquez leaves behind a wife and five children.
Stark County Sheriff’s Officer Adam V. Streicher was the victim of a shotgun blast on March 22, 2002, while attempting to serve an arrest warrant at a subject’s residence. Streicher, 22, was nearing the completion of his first year with the department.
On September 18, 2002, Officer Benjamin Perez of the Chicago Police Department was struck and killed by a Metra train while setting up a surveillance point for a narcotics investigation. Perez, who had been with the department for four years, leaves behind a wife and three children.
The last officer killed in the line of duty was Officer Steven E. Graham, 53, of the Barrington-Inverness Police Department. While attempting to subdue an offender who was resisting arrest, Graham suffered a fatal heart attack. Officer Graham was nearing his 30th anniversary with the department and is survived by a wife and two children.
The remaining two officers honored died in the line of duty between 1920 and 1946. On October 19, 1920, Homewood Police Officer Paul Edward Buckley was assisting the Illinois State Police in a pursuit when a truck pulled out in front of both police cars and struck Officer Buckley’s vehicle. Buckley died from injuries he sustained in the crash.
Havana Police Department Patrolman Warren Hickman, 47, was struck and killed on September 22, 1946, while replacing road equipment. Hickman was a five-year veteran with the department and left behind a wife and three children.
Thursday marked the 18th observance of Illinois Police Officers’ Memorial Day. A national day of remembrance, National Peace Officers’ Memorial Day, takes place May 15 of each year. During 2002, 125 United States police officers were killed (55 feloniously and 70 accidentally) in the line of duty.