YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio - As the name of 25 police officers killed in the line of duty is read one by one like a final roll call, a single rose for each fallen comrade is placed in a wreath and saluted by fellow officers vowing never to forget.
Family, friends and community leaders gathered at Via Mt. Carmel Church in Youngstown for the Annual Fallen Officers Memorial Ceremony.
Robert Litch was only 12-years-old when his father, Mahoning County Sheriff's Deputy Sonny Litch was killed, "It's still hard. I get upset and still feel the pain. But I love my father, and I'll always love my father. My heart goes out to all of the other families that have lost a loved one."
The program is sponsored by three Fraternal Order of Police Lodges representing Youngstown Police, Youngstown State University Police and the Mahoning County Sheriff's Department.
Fallen Officers from the Mahoning Valley:
William Freed, May 17, 1891, Youngstown Police Department
Alfred Evans, November 5, 1911, Youngstown Police Department
Samuel Banks, October 4, 1919, Youngstown Police Department
John Constantino, May 11, 1920, Campbell Police Department
Alexander Warren, May 3, 1921, Youngstown Police Department
Walter Flickinger, June 7, 1923, Lowellville Police Department
Joe Ruby, November 11, 1923, Campbell Police Department
George Leonard, March 29, 1924, Youngstown Police Department
Ben Yeaden, February 27, 1925, Youngstown Police Department
Henry Clemens, December 4, 1927, Youngstown Police Department
John Harkins, January 1, 1952, Struthers Police Department
Raymond Darwich, November 16, 1952, Struthers Police Department
Frank Cichon, December 21, 1963, Youngstown Police Department
Albert Masi, February 12, 1973, Campbell Police Department
William "Bud" Comm, August 12, 1975, YSU Police Department
John "Sonny" Litch, October 22, 1981, Mahoning Co. Sheriff's Department
Richard Becker, November 6, 1983, Poland Township Police Department
Charles Yates, March 30, 1984, Poland Township Police Department
Ralph DeSalle, June 13th, 1984, Youngstown Police Department
Paul Durkin, September 21, 1987, Youngstown Police Department
Millard Williams, April 14, 1992, Youngstown Police Department
Steve Malkovits, May 21, 1993, Youngstown Police Department
Carmen "Skip" Renda, March 16, 1996, Youngstown Police / YSU Police
William Rickets, April 2, 1997, New Middletown Police Department
Michael T. Hartzell, April 29, 2003, Youngstown Police Department