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Gov. Beshear Honors 10 Fallen Law Enforcement Officers at Annual Law Enforcement Memorial Ceremony

Scott County Sheriff's Deputy Caleb Conley, who lost his life in 2023, plus nine historical names added to Kentucky's monument

2024 Kentucky Law Enforcement Foundation Memorial Ceremony

RICHMOND, Ky. (June 4, 2024) – Today, Gov. Andy Beshear joined law enforcement officials and family members to pay tribute to 10 Kentucky officers who lost their lives in the line of duty.

“Paying tribute to the sacrifice made by our Kentucky heroes is something we all stand together on, and we hold them and their families in our prayers," Gov. Beshear said. “Last year, we lost Scott County Sheriff's Deputy Caleb Conley, who was not just a Kentucky hero, he was an American hero. We remember him today and every day going forward for the life he lived and the love he had for his family, friends and community."

This year's ceremony honored:

  • Scott County Sheriff's Deputy Caleb Conley,​ end of watch May 22, 2023. Deputy Conley was shot and killed while conducting a traffic stop in Georgetown.

Additionally, nine historical honorees will be added to the monument this year. They are:

  • Arthur J. Harrington, U.S. Marshal, end of watch June 6, 1876
  • George Ellis, U.S. Marshal, end of watch Dec. 10, 1877
  • Boyd Arnett, U.S. Marshal, end of watch Aug. 20, 1895
  • Tes Deakins, Franklin County Sheriff's Office, end of watch Nov. 2, 1897
  • James M. Blair, U.S. Marshal, end of watch Aug. 21, 1899
  • Howard Wilson, U.S. Marshal, end of watch July 8, 1900
  • Elijah F. Hoskins, Crab Orchard Police Department, end of watch Dec. 24, 1911
  • Everett M. Gibson, Wayne County Sheriff's Office, end of watch July 25, 1949
  • Noah R. Friend, U.S. Marshal, end of watch Nov. 13, 1963.

The Governor said Kentucky's Law Enforcement Memorial Monument holds the names of 589 men and women heroes who have died in the line of duty since 1845 after adding today's 10 officers.

During the ceremony, Katie Ellis DeSimone spoke about her late husband, Richmond Police Officer Daniel Ellis, who was killed in the line of duty in 2015.

“Loss can only be described as brutal beyond imagination," DeSimone said. “It is a pain that no human should ever have to feel. It's lonely, and honestly feels like you might not make it to the next day. There is no quick remedy or cure for the pain. But remember, there is always hope. … I believe Daniel would have wanted me to do everything in my power to provide the best life possible for our young son, Luke. Thinking about making him proud is what got me through some of the worst days. Because above all, I remember he would have wanted me to live, because I was still here for a reason."

For the first time since 2007, the Kentucky Law Enforcement Memorial Monument was expanded with a wing being added on each side. The expansion allows for an additional 296 names to be added, in the event of future line of duty deaths. The Governor recognized that the expansion is one that should never have to be made, as it means we have lost far too many law enforcement officers, but it was necessary to ensure that every officer who gives their life in service to the commonwealth is properly honored and never forgotten.

The following individuals and groups participated in today's ceremony: Scott County Sheriff's Office Honor Guard; Jefferson County Public Schools Officer; DOCJT recruit Brian Richardson; Richmond Mayor Robert Blythe; Kentucky State Police Honor Guard; Morehead State University Bugler Luke Reed; Louisville Police Pipes and Drums; Fayette County Sheriff's Office Deputy Will Young; DOCJT Supervisor Eric Garner; Kentucky Horse Park Mounted Police.

The Beshear-Coleman administration's top priority is the safety of all Kentuckians. The Governor's public safety actions are creating safer communities and a better Kentucky.

In December 2023, the Governor proposed a $500 increase to the law enforcement annual training stipend, but the General Assembly chose to provide a combined $262 increase over the next two years. The budget signed by the Governor raises the training stipend to an all-time high of $4,562 by fiscal year 2026. Additionally, the Governor is providing part-time law enforcement officers an annual training stipend for the first time in the history of the commonwealth.

Since taking office, Gov. Beshear has awarded more than $10 million in grant funding to assist state and local law enforcement agencies in purchasing the tools and resources that will not only allow them to protect Kentucky communities but will also ensure their safety as they stand on the front lines every day. In August, the administration awarded $2.1 million in grant funding to enhance public safety, curb the sale of illegal drugs and fight addiction.

In July 2023, Gov. Beshear broke ground in Richmond on a new law enforcement training facility named in honor of Jody Cash, who lost his life in the line of duty May 16, 2022, while serving as chief deputy of the Calloway County Sheriff's Department. Members of the Cash family, as well as state and local officials and staff from the DOCJT, joined the Governor in taking a step forward to enhance the safety of Kentucky's nearly 8,000 peace officers who risk their lives every day to protect Kentucky families.

In June 2022, Gov. Beshear announced the Military to Law Enforcement Program (M-2-LE). M-2-LE allows local law enforcement agencies in Kentucky to hire active service members within all U.S. military branches during their last 180 days of service. Upon being contracted by a law enforcement agency, the military member will continue to receive their pay and benefits from the U.S. Military while they undergo law enforcement training at the Department of Criminal Justice Training.

About the Kentucky Law Enforcement Memorial Foundation:

The Kentucky Law Enforcement Memorial Foundation seeks to recognize all Kentucky peace officers who have given their lives in service to the commonwealth.

The memorial foundation was established in 1999 to build a monument recognizing Kentucky officers who have made the ultimate sacrifice. Once the monument was completed in 2000, the organization expanded its efforts to include an ongoing financial endowment program, which helps officers and their families with educational, medical and emergency needs.​