By Hank Tester

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – An annual ceremony, in its 36th year, honored fallen law enforcement officers at Tropical Park in Miami-Dade Thursday night.

“My husband was a police officer in Hialeah, and he was killed. He was killed in 1986. He was 27 years old,” Terry Miyares said.

Hundreds went to the memorial. There were police officers from every police department in South Florida. And plenty of family members of those who were touched by the ultimate sacrifice also attended.

The family of Eva May Jones, a corrections officer who died in an auto crash, was one of four honored Thursday night.

“It is a little emotional for all of us. I was 18,” said Denise Stewart.

“She was killed the day before my 16th birthday,” added Mary Harrell.

Symbolic traditions filled the memorial, such as the sound of bagpipes, flag presentations to loved ones and the rider-less horse.

The horse is symbolic of a fallen warrior led into the ceremony – a reminder of the dedication of those who swear to serve and protect.

“We are family. Because of that badge, we are family and they do not forget. We are here to remember,” Miyares said.

The hope is that this year there will be no new names added to this granite memorial wall.


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