DEARBORN HEIGHTS (WWJ) – Sometime this September, Wayne County will have its own memorial to honor first responders who have lost their lives in service to their community.
Jim Bowens took part in the ground-breaking at Hines Park where the Wayne County First Responders Memorial will be located at Haggarty Road.
Bowens son Matthew, a Detroit police officer, died during a 2004 shootout while trying to save his partner.
He told WWJ Newsradio 950’s Pat Sweeting this will help keep his sons memory, and the memory of other lost heros, alive. “[For] a lifetime,” Bowens said. “When I’m gone and my kids and grandkids are gone, it will still be here.”
Wayne County Executive Bob Ficano was also on hand for Thursday’s event.
“So many times first responders … if a tragedy hits, many times, you know, for a couple days there’s attention to them — and then natural instinct when people just keep going on with their lives,” Ficano said.
“We want something that actually recognizes how first responders actually risk their lives, day in and day out,” he said. “Unfortunately we were just remanded of that tragedy last week with the Westland firefighter.”
The memorial will include a monument wall listing the names of the fallen first responders, a concrete walkway, a paver plaza, parking, lighting and landscaping. The 1.5 acre memorial will be funded by a parks millage.
On October 5, a half -marathon and 5K run will raise funds for maintenance. For more info or to register, visit this link.