Fallen officer’s father speaks at Law Day and Peace Officers Memorial
On Friday, May 3, the Cabarrus County community gathered at the Governmental Center to honor fallen officers and pay tribute to the work of officers and court workers during the combined Law Day and Peace Officers Memorial ceremonies.
Family members of officers killed in the line of duty in Cabarrus County were also present to memorialize their loved ones.
Cabarrus County Sheriff’s Office Captain Laura Heggins received the Robert Jackson Eury Memorial Award, given in memory of the deputy sheriff killed in the line of duty in 1972.
Heggins joined the Cabarrus County Sheriff’s Office in 1992 as a sworn deputy in the detention center. She rose through the ranks and was recently promoted to captain of the administrative support services division. In the community, Heggins works with the homeless population through the Main Street Mission and is an active member of Oak Grove Baptist Church in China Grove.
Sheriff Van Shaw presented Heggins with the prestigious honor.
“As long as I have breath I will never forget the ultimate sacrifice our law enforcement officers have made and I will always tell their story.” Heggins told the event crowd. “I will never forget.”
Also recognized on Friday was attorney Bill Rogers. The Cabarrus County Bar Association presented Rogers with the Liberty Bell Award for his 20-plus years of service.
Keynote speaker Bob Doty spoke of the trauma his family endured after his son, York County Detective Michael Doty, was killed on duty on January 16, 2018.
“That day I got the call that any parent doesn’t want to get,” Doty said. “I was told my son was severely wounded while pursuing a domestic violence suspect. My family and I embarked on a journey that left each member … profoundly changed.”
After his son’s death, Doty did what he thought Michael would want him to do—to find the good in the situation. For instance, Michael was an organ donor and his death helped give life to two community members.
The more Doty looked for good, the more he found.
“Being here today and being able to recognize the incredible sacrifices our men and women in blue and all first responders make is an incredible opportunity and allows me to vocalize what many community members feel,” Doty said. “There’s an incredible amount of good that’s allowed me to be in front of you today, to remind you of the sacrifices our first responders make every day.”
The awards ceremony concluded with a procession to the memorial courtyard for the ceremonial placing of the wreath at the memorial for Cabarrus County's Fallen Law Enforcement Officers. Kannapolis Police Department's ceremonial rifle team was present for the 21-gun salute and customary playing of “Taps.”
Since 1899, six law enforcement officers lost their lives serving Cabarrus residents in the line of duty.
William J Kearns: Concord Police Department, September 2, 1899
William F Propst: Cabarrus County Sheriff’s Office, November 17, 1922
Martin Reuben Kiser: Cabarrus County Sheriff’s Office, March 3, 1931
Robert J Eury: Cabarrus County Sheriff’s Office, May 5, 1972
Roger Dale Carter: Kannapolis Police Department, December 31, 1993
Jackie L Daniel: NC DMV, July 28, 1994
Representatives from the North Carolina State Highway Patrol, Cabarrus County Sheriff's Office, Kannapolis and Concord Police departments, North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation, Attorneys of the Cabarrus County Bar Association and multiple Cabarrus County judges and elected officials attended the event.
For more information about Law Day and the ceremony, call the Cabarrus County Sheriff’s Office at 704-920-3000 or visit www.cabarruscounty.us and www.lawday.org.