Missoula authorities honor fallen, commemorate officer bravery


MISSOULA, Mont. - This is National Law Enforcement Memorial Week, and in Missoula local authorities gathered to remember their fallen comrades and to recognize outstanding officers and their families.

NBC Montana was there when a purple star was awarded to Officer Denielle Poling.  She was run over by a suspect during an arrest in late January and is still recovering.

Lieutenant Rich Stepper and Officer Michael Kamerer, who were also involved in that incident, were awarded police and service medals as well.

"This memorial is a lasting tribute to the sacrifices made by these fallen officers and their families who have had to continue on," said Missoula County Undersheriff Josh Clark.  "This memorial is also a lasting tribute to every member of law enforcement who puts their uniform on everyday and to their families that support them."

The following officers were honored for giving their lives in the line of duty:

James Thompson – July 1, 1878
Edmund Trudeau – February 14, 1904
Alexander D. Ross – March 17, 1931
Paul A. Read – July 21, 1933
Lyle Ward – March 26, 1934
Lloyd J. Stringer – March 11, 1941
Roy Thompson – August 20, 1958
Donald E. Gregory – January 27, 1976
Stephen A. Lepiane – November 5, 1982
Allen L. Kimery – December 6, 1984
Robert J. Heinle – February 12, 2010


The following officers were honored at tonight's event:

Missoula Police Department Officers:
Officer Ben Freudenberg – Lifesaving Medal
Officer Denielle Poling – Purple Star
Lieutenant Rich Stepper – Police Medal
Officer Michael Kamerer – Meritorious Service Medal


University of Montana Officers:
Captain Ben Gladwin – Lifesaving Medal
Police Specialist – Thomas "T.J." Johnson – Lifesaving Medal

Missoula County Sheriff's Detention Officers:
DO1 Steve Roney – Lifesaving Ribbon
DO1 Pamela Blendermann – Lifesaving Ribbon
DO1 Timothy Fawell – Lifesaving Ribbon
DO1 John Hegel – Lifesaving Ribbon
DO1 Ryan Manning – Lifesaving Ribbon


Missoula County Sheriff's Deputies:
Deputy Ken White – Meritorious Performance Ribbons
Lieutenant Jeremy Meeder – Meritorious Performance Ribbons
Detective John Lamb – Sheriff's Star
Sr. Deputy Jared Cochran – Sheriff's Star 

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