DeKalb adds name to fallen officers list

Each May, DeKalb County public safety officials recognize DeKalb officers who lost their lives in the line of duty.

At the annual DeKalb County Police Department Fallen Officer Memorial Service held May 8 outside of DeKalb History Center in Decatur, public safety officials from various departments were in attendance to pay homage to fallen officers. The newest name added to the list of fallen officers was DeKalb County Police South Precinct Officer Edgar Flores.      

  Flores died in 2018 after he was fatally shot by a suspect during a traffic stop in Decatur. The Flores family attended the ceremony.

Grieving family members of officers killed in the line of duty said the pain never goes away, but time helps ease the hurt.

Edgar Flores’ mother sheds a tear at the DeKalb County Law Enforcement Officer’s Memorial.

“Time heals a lot, but we still miss him. I sit and look at all these young officers around and I pray that none of their families have to go through what we went through,” said Susan Wilson, wife of DKPD officer Thomas Atkisson who was killed in December 1976. “Every year we come it’s like we’re reliving the funeral. He was just the best. He was my first love.

He was everything.”

Wilson said family members of fallen officers often form lifelong bonds at the ceremony.

“It does help to have other people around who understand. We see the same families every year when we come back. We come here and we catch up with everyone,” Wilson said.

Mabel Teague came to the ceremony to honor her son DeKalb County Police Officer Richard Teague, who died November 1992 while escorting a funeral procession when his motorcycle was struck by a car at an intersection. Teague said she appreciates the county for honoring fallen DeKalb officers.  

“I think it’s really nice that they do this. It’s been a few years since we’ve been here, but we were determined to come this year,” Teague said. “I’m so glad I got to come this year. Just seeing his name and seeing how they honor him.”

Photos of fallen officers.

The ceremony included a 21-gun salute and a helicopter flyover to honor officers. A bell rang for each DeKalb officer who lost their life while serving.

“They do this job protecting the citizens. It’s a great loss, but these families feel the pain we feel. We feel the pain they feel,” Teague said.

DeKalb County CEO Michael Thurmond gave remarks during the ceremony and said he plans to allocate additional funding to DeKalb public safety.

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