ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - The nation is remembering fallen officers for National Police Week, and for the second year in a row, the Rapides Parish remembrance coincides with the national event.
At the Amphitheater in Alexandria on Tuesday night, RPSO, APD and State Police were among multiple agencies who joined together for the 21st year of this event.
The night included remarks from local officials and a roll call of fallen law enforcement officers from the Central Louisiana area.
Last year, there were 135 law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty. Five of those were in Louisiana. So far this year, there have been 53 line of duty deaths.
Rapides Sheriff William Earl Hilton said it's an important night for officers, but even more so for the families that lost loved ones.
"It brings people closer together,” said Sheriff Hilton. “You see the camaraderie here, you see a lot of the law enforcers families are here. A lot of them are close to me and close to my department. And I know so many of them. It's a very touching and moving experience to do this."
The night concluded with a candle light vigil, all the color blue, to honor those who made the ultimate sacrifice.