BRADENTON -- Law enforcement, local officials and the community gathered Thursday to pay tribute to officers in Manatee County who gave their lives in the line of duty.
"Recognition of the ultimate sacrifice to preserve our freedoms is not new," said Circuit Judge Charles Williams.
Williams referred to President Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg address, quoting:
"From these honored dead, we take increased devotion for that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion," Williams said.
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Those words, he noted, still ring true today.
"The cause may have changed, but the devotion to duty, the protection of freedom and the goal for justice is still present with us today," Williams said. "On this occasion, we recognize and we remember that these fallen protectors of liber
ty gave all that they had to secure all of the ideals that were expressed at Gettysburg 150 years ago."
Williams also recognized the most recent American law enforcement officers who gave the ultimate sacrifice, Hattiesburg, Miss., officers Benjamin J. Deen and Liquori Tate.
Those honored at the memorial outside the Manatee County Courthouse included:
Officers Carl Cox and Steve Bennett, Bradenton Police Department.
Sgt. John Baxter and Trooper Jeffrey Young, Florida Highway Patrol.
Constables Shirley Dewey Smith and Barnie Cumbia.
Detective Herbert Grimes, Manatee County Sheriff's Office
Marshal Joe Terry, city of Palmetto.
Before the roll call of fallen officers was announced, Manatee County Sheriff's Office Sgt. Brady McCabe was honored by deputy Gaythel Siplin, Fraternal Order of Police chaplain, for his dedication and commitment to duty.
On Aug. 28, a suspect charged at McCabe with a sword, forcing him to shoot the man to death.
"As a result of his swift actions and intense training, he is with us today," Siplin said.
Jessica De Leon, Bradenton Herald law enforcement reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7049. You can follow her on Twitter@JDeLeon1012.