History of the Memorial
Virginia is one of only six states in the nation lacking a monument to public safety heroes who have given their lives in the line of duty.
The creation of a state-level memorial honoring public safety officers killed in the line of duty has long been a top priority for Virginia's various safety organizations, 165,000+ officers, and their families. Due to various reasons, including recessions and budget cuts, for many years the project wasn't advanced.
In 2007, determined to finally further this cause, Governor Tim Kaine established a commission to select a memorial design and location, the first major step toward completion of a memorial. To the commission he appointed the Secretary of Public Safety and more than a dozen representatives of public safety agencies and the community. He also included three surviving dependants of officers lost in the line of duty, who each provided valuable insight for the other commission members in selecting a design and location appropriate for this purpose.
The Commonwealth Public Safety Memorial Commission quickly selected Darden Memorial Garden near Virginia's Capitol Square as the site for the future monument, and, over the course of nearly two years, administered a nationwide open-call process for the submission of designs.
Having selected a memorial design and location, in late December 2009 Governor Kaine chose Virginia Public Safety Foundation (VPSF) to serve as the non-profit memorial administrator, charged with raising funding and supervising construction, until the monument is finished. VPSF has long been a partner of the Commonwealth's when matters affecting Virginia's public safety community are concerned: VPSF has served as the administrator for the Commonwealth Public Safety Medal of Valor for nearly ten years. A ceremony planned for late December 2009 to unveil the memorial design and location was cancelled due to inclement weather.
On September 11, 2010, Governor Bob McDonnell added his voice of support to the memorial campaign by signing Executive Order 24 ratifying the selection of Darden Garden as the memorial site and extending the term of leadership for the Commonwealth Public Safety Memorial Commission.
Follow memorial construction progress on-line by clicking here.