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Lee County law enforcement remembers fallen officers

Published: May. 20, 2021 at 10:41 AM EDT
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LEE COUNTY, Ala. (WTVM) - Law enforcement agencies in Lee County have lost six officers in the line of duty over the years. On Wednesday, May 20, the anniversary of the death of one of those fallen officers, dozens came together to remember and honor them all.

“[We’re] giving the highest honor to those that gave their lives simply in the performance of their job,” said Lee County Sheriff Jay Jones.

According to law enforcement officials, the Opelika Police Department, Auburn Police Department and Lee County Sheriff’s Office have lost six men in total in the line of duty since 1884.

Dozens gathered at Wednesday’s ceremony to honor them. The date of the ceremony was especially significant. It was the anniversary of the death of Auburn Police Officer William Buechner, the most recent officer to make that ultimate sacrifice. His end of watch was May 19, 2019.

“His smile was a big one,” said Albert Gersch, a friend of Officer Buechner’s. “Will was always cracking jokes. He was always the person that everybody wanted to be around. Being able to spend time together is the biggest thing that I miss.

Law enforcement officials said their tribute to these fallen officers is a way to remember their love and legacy.

“[We should not] forget the sacrifices of these peace officers that we recognize today,” said Sheriff Jones.

They it’s also said Wednesday’s ceremony was a way to remember the loved ones of those six men who are still mourning the loss now.

“To hear their names spoken again and to hear things about them and the dedication they gave to the community,” said Paul Register, the public safety director for the City of Auburn.

There is a fundraiser that lasts until Saturday for the family of Officer Buechner, as well as a memorial ride Saturday morning. That ride begins at the Fort Benning Harley Davidson and ends at Officer Buechner’s grave.

For more information, email auburngunners@gmail.com or visit their website.

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