WASHINGTON (Gray DC) – National Police Week – and the events honoring nearly 400 fallen officers – are virtual this year. However, organizers continue to remember victims of law enforcement across the country.
The legacy of North Georgia ranger Stanley Curtis Elrod lives on. His name is now engraved on the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, DC. His memory is forever engraved in the heart of his wife Julie.
“He would literally say he was a legend in his day. But for him it was all about life, laughter and love. He never met a stranger, ”she said. “He was a man of faith who loved his family, friends, work, the state.”
Captain Elrod, whom everyone calls Stan, was on the run, which he was doing to keep fit for work, when he was hit by a drunk driver on September 3 last year. He died on the scene, leaving behind his wife and two boys, Levi and Luke.
“You are very much like your father, which helps on days when I miss your father,” she said. “So to see him in them is really a blessing, relieves the pain.”
Stan was a 27-year veteran with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources. Employee Lt. Judd Smith calls him a partner, but above all a close friend.
“He was a one-of-a-kind guy, always full of fun. He was a joker from day one, he could get away with some one-liners like it was nobody’s business, ”said Smith.
Judd and Stan have ridden the Police Unity Tour together for the past few years to honor fallen officers.
Now this week, Judd is on a Police Unity Tour Florida bike ride in Stan’s memory, a 350-mile trip from Tallahassee to Titusville. Drivers finish their ride in the American Police Hall of Fame and Museum.
“It means a lot more than it has to me in the past,” said Smith.
In the country’s capital, Police Week events this week are virtual due to COVID restrictions. Stanley’s name is one of 394 officers engraved on the memorial that year.
“We owe it to them not to forget their sacrifice,” said the fraternal order of Police Commissioner Patrick Yoes.
Police Week organizers say there will be a personal candlelight vigil and memorial service in Washington, DC, the second week of October
To find out more about this week’s events, including the virtual candlelight vigil, click here.
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