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Fallen law enforcement honored in Stephens County

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DUNCAN, Okla._It's being called a “Monument in Time” as Stephens County law enforcement officers paid homage to their very own who have been killed in the line of duty.

Roses symbolizing five men who paid the ultimate sacrifice in the county were laid by each respective department official this morning. Nearly one hundred years of law enforcement in Stephens County was represented in each of the officers that were honored.

It was an emotional ceremony for many people in the crowd, including many officers and city leaders. They took a moment out of their day to honor the five men whose deaths dated as far back as the 1920's all the way to 1985. Their goal is to never forget the sacrifices these men made for their communities and all of Stephens County.

"Deep down we felt that we needed to do something for our fallen officers that gave the ultimate in Stephens County," said Sheriff Wayne McKinney.

  • Sheriff's Deputy W.A. Worley, 1921.
  • County Sheriff Waldo A. Williams, 1930.
  • Marlow officer James Hill, 1931.
  • Duncan Chief of Police Irvin Gossett, 1939.
  • Duncan officer Darrell James, 1985.

Five men whose sacrifice still rings true today.

"You know, they played a part in building Stephens County, protecting the citizens. We needed a monument somewhere that the public could see at a public place like our courthouse," said Sheriff McKinney.

Cheryl Huffmaster, widow of Officer James, says her husband was a humble man whose passion was his job.

"He would say probably those brave men whose names are etched there, I don't know if I should be on the same page as them. He loved being a law enforcement officer," said Huffmaster.

The memorial will now forever keep the memory of those brave men alive, something that means everything to her.

"It just really takes your breath away,” said Huffmaster after seeing the memorial. “It's really absolutely such an honor and I know that we are all so proud of them for doing this."

If you'd like to check out the memorial yourself, the stone with each of the fallen officers' names now sits permanently outside the Stephens County Courthouse.

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