TPD Marks One Year Anniversary Of Two Fallen Officers

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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) -- Hundreds gathered outside the Topeka Law Enforcement Center to honor the lives of Officer Jeff Atherly and Corporal David Gogian.

The tragedy a year ago not only affected the family friends and co-workers of the two fallen officers, but it also inspired an entire community to make sure the legacies of the two lived on.

"I think it was great to see the support that we had today and it shows how the community can come together in the face of tragedy," said Topeka's District 8 City Council Member Nathan Schmidt, one of the many elected officials on hand.

The event was put together by the Fraternal Order of Police to mark the one year anniversary of the shooting deaths to both Officer Jeff Atherly and Corporal David Gogian just one year ago on December 16th.

"We wanted to get together and support the families but also to remember all the officers on the wall that have sacrificed and given their lives to the community," said President of the Topeka F.O.P. Lodge #3 Steve Evans

Since 1912 there have been 10 names etched into the memorial wall which serves as a stark reminder to those that choose to protect and serve the Capital City.

"It's a very difficult job and takes a special kind of person to do what they do everyday and put their lives at risk. They are a special wonderful people," said Councilman Schmidt.

From family and friends to elected officials and complete strangers, the amount of support since the tragic events last
December has been overwhelming.

"The community has been tremendous and great to the families and to the officers this past year. Just telling an officer thank you can put a smile on their faces and I encourage them to keep doing that no matter if it's here or anywhere across the country," added Evans.

David Gogian