[The original image -- uncropped, at higher resolution, without lettering -- can be accessed via a page on NYS DOCS' web site featuring links to its memorial ceremony photos. The above caption is from that page.]
Employees, Fallen Prison Heroes
[ALBANY, JUNE 4, 2002] - Governor George E. Pataki today attended the New York State Department of Corrections' (DOCS) annual ceremony to memorialize DOCS employees who have died in the line of duty, and to present awards to employees for valor and extraordinary service.
"New York State is fortunate to have the finest correction, officers in the nation" Governor Pataki said.
"With great courage and professionalism, these dedicated individuals place themselves at tremendous risk to protect our local communities, and we have an obligation to ensure that those who have lost their lives in the line of duty are never forgotten.
"I am honored to join with you today as we remember the individuals who have made the ultimate sacrifice on behalf of their fellow citizens, and to recognize many of our current DOCS employees who are working hard every day to make New York a better, safer State."
Senate Majority Leader Joseph L Bruno said, "Today we recognize the men and women who have given their lives in the line of duty for the people of New York State.
"The work done by the officers and employees of the Department of Correctional Services provides us with a sense of security, one that is paramount in today's climate, and we owe them our respect and gratitude." . . . .
In his remarks today, Governor Pataki spoke directly to family members of those who were slain in the retaking of the Attica prison after the 1971 riot as well as to several former hostages who were also present.
In March 2001, the Governor named Commissioner Goord to chair the Attica Task Force to examine the issues and concerns of these individuals and their families.
Deputy Speaker Arthur 0. Eve and Senator Volker also serve on the bipartisan joint task force.
The Governor also proclaimed June 2-8, 2002, as Correctional Services Employee Week.
Today's ceremony took place at the permanent memorial park dedicated in 2000 on the 50-acre DOCS Albany Training Academy campus.
The centerpiece of the memorial in front of the Academy is an Empire blue granite memorial that stands 12 feet high, six feet wide, 18 inches deep and weighs 10 tons. It includes an inscription that reads:
the Department of Correctional Services who gave their lives
in the performance of their duties on behalf of
all the people of the State of New York."
No names are inscribed on the memorial. Instead each honoree's name, identifying details and cause of death are inscribed on a plaque displayed in the memorial room of the Academy. The first honoree was killed by an inmate in 1861. The honor roll includes 25 uniformed employees and eight civilians among the 33 who have died in the line of duty as a result of inmate actions. . . .