National Peace Officers Day is today, Police Week ceremony private because of pandemic

The Hawaii Police Department conducted a special private recognition of Police Week on Monday at the Hilo police station because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The ceremony included Police Chief Paul Ferreira and his upper command staff at the “Ka Malu Aloha” police memorial wall.

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The ceremony was to honor the Big Island’s officers who gave their lives in the line of duty: Officer Manuel Cadinha, who gave his life in 1918; Officer William “Red” Oili, who gave his life in 1936; Officer Ronald “Shige” Jitchaku, who gave his life in 1990; Officer Kenneth Keliipio, who gave his life in 1997; National Park Ranger Steve Makuakane-Jarrell, who gave his life in 1999; and Officer Bronson Kaimana Kaliloa, who was killed in the line of duty July 18, 2018.

Because of the pandemic, only police command staff was present and guests weren’t invited to the formal ceremony.

“This was a very tough decision, but we believe it is the right one,” Ferreira said.

Those who want to view the ceremony can do so by going online to https://youtu.be/8u1U1uECz7c.

In addition, today is National Peace Officers Memorial Day, as part of National Police Week, which was proclaimed by President John F. Kennedy and established by a joint resolution of Congress in 1962.

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At the direction of President Donald Trump, Gov. David Ige ordered that the U.S. flag and the Hawaii state flag be flown at half-staff at the state Capitol and at all state offices and agencies as well as the Hawaii National Guard today in honor of Peace Officers Memorial Day.

In addition, the president will light the White House blue in honor of law enforcement officers today. The president also encourages all Americans to display the U.S. flag at their homes and businesses today.

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