Fallen police officers remembered
Outside of the Crowley Police Department’s office is a memorial set up in memory of Patrolmen Ezra Foreman and Anthony Suire and Lt. Richard E. Newman Sr. (Photo by Jeannine LeJeune)
Ann Mire is a librarian with the Acadia Parish Library's Crowley branch with a deep appreciation for history. She regularly contributes to The Crowley Post-Signal with a monthly Crowley history article as well as reviews of local plays and performances.
Established by a joint resolution of Congress in 1962 and first proclaimed by President John Kennedy, May 15 is recognized as National Peace Officers Memorial Day and the week within which it occurs is National Police Week.
In part, that original resolution noted that “police officers of America have worked devotedly and selflessly on behalf of the people of this nation, regardless of the peril or hazard to themselves.”
In 2014, that week will be May 11 through May 17.
In Crowley, a special ceremony will be held on Tuesday, May 13, at City Courtroom at the Police Department on 426 N. Avenue F at 7 p.m. Crowley’s local organization of Concerns of Police Survivors (COPS), headed by Betty Perry, along with Chief of Police K.P. Gibson, and Crowley’s local police force, have organized this year’s local ceremony.
Dedicated to honoring America’s law enforcement community, the principal organizers of National Police Week are National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, the Fraternal Order of Police/Fraternal Order of Police Auxilliary, and COPS.
As National Peace Officers Memorial Day is held in Crowley, it is well to remember the three Crowley officers who lost their lives in the line of duty.
The three were Patrolman Ezra Foreman, whose end of watch was Monday, May 4, 1959; Patrolman Anthony Suire, whose end of watch was Thursday, Sept. 6, 1962; and Lt. Richard Newman Sr., whose end of watch was Friday, Feb. 19, 1993.
Officer Ezra Foreman had been a member of the Crowley police force for 16 years when he was shot and killed responding to a domestic disturbance call.
As he approached the home, Edward Davis fired the fatal shot. In the patrol car, Foreman’s partner Clifford Herpin suffered minor wounds when shotgun pellets struck him.
Foreman was survived by his wife Jennie Matarona Foreman, two stepsons and one stepdaughter.
Among his pallbearers was Anthony Suire, a patrolman who was killed in an automobile accident during a vehicle pursuit.
His three-wheeled motorbike slammed into the back of an automobile stopped for a traffic violation. His bike spun around and overturned throwing Suire to the pavement. He died of brain injuries sustained in the accident.
He was survived by his wife Rita Dore Suire, five sons and five daughters.
Lt. Richard E. Newman Sr. was accidently shot and killed by a fellow officer during a drug raid in Lafayette.
A nine-year member of the police force, Newman had recently joined the Acadia Parish Narcotics Task Force.
Newman was survived by his wife Betty Woods Newman as well as three daughters and one son.
Crowley’s police officers are willing to serve and protect. The public is encouraged to take some time from its schedules to join them and members of COPS in paying homage to those officers who gave their lives in service of others.
If you are unable to make the memorial, you can also take the time to thank your local police officers this week and every week. Police officers face each day knowing that it could be the end of their watch, yet they serve with a courage and a desire to help that few can understand.