Mississippi places in the top five when it comes to police officers killed while on duty. In recognition of National Police Week, the Biloxi Police Department conducted its Fallen Officer Memorial Service on Wednesday. Twenty five years ago, Sandra Meaut lost her husband, Mike, to a brain aneurism while he was on duty at the Biloxi Police Department. Ever since, Biloxi Police remembers Mike during its Fallen Officer Memorial.
Meaut says, "It means so much to me. The first few years, I couldn't come, but after that, it keeps mike alive and it’s nice to know he is remembered.” While Mike was alive, he took a church trip overseas and wrote a prayer asking God to keep him safe while serving his community. The police department reads Mike's prayer at almost every gathering. Meaut also says, "It keeps him alive for me and the people of Biloxi." There was not a dry eye in the audience, especially when Dayna Baker took the podium and read a poem she wrote about her late uncle, David Hicombothem, who was also a Biloxi officer.
Baker says, "It just hits, and I don’t know why, but for some reason he’s been on my mind this past year." Baker says she is thankful for the police department’s efforts to honor her uncle, David. Baker also says, "This is something that the family needs, to know that their loved ones have not been forgotten and it helps the family with healing.” Meaut says that even though it has been 25 years, there are still tough days and she hopes other families feeling the loss of loved ones can be strong together.
Meaut closes, "Yes, it does get better, but there will be times during the years when it is just a real as the minute it’s happened." The Gulfport Police Department will honor their fallen officers at 10 a.m. Thursday morning on the steps of the department.