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Hughes County deputy remembered during National Police Week

Updated: May. 13, 2021 at 2:26 PM EDT
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WASHINGTON (Gray DC) - Hughes County Sheriff Deputy Lee Weber, who drowned last year over the 4th of July weekend, is being honored nationally during Police Week. His name is now etched in stone on the National Law Enforcement Memorial.

Attempting to rescue his 8-year-old son, Weber drowned in the Missouri River last July. His son was rescued by nearby boaters, but that day the community lost a dedicated servant, a National Guard veteran, and according to Sheriff Darin Johnson, a friend to all.

“That’s what allowed him to progress through the ranks in our department,” said Johnson. “It was just his work ethic, his personality, and his desire to do the job well.”

This year, the names of 394 officers who died in the line of duty have been added to the National Law Enforcement Memorial

It’s part of a modified Police Week. Traditionally, thousands descend on Washington mid-May to pay tribute to fallen officers from across the country. This year, due to lingering COVID-19 restrictions, all in-person events have been postponed until October.

“We are going to come together and have our candlelight vigil and memorial service to honor the fallen of the past two years since we have not been able to be in-person to do so,” said National Fraternal Order of Police President Patrick Yoes.

Until then, organizers are hosting a virtual vigil Thursday night where you can honor Chief Deputy Weber and others killed in the line of duty last year.

“(Darnell) wasn’t just a deputy working for me,” said Sheriff Johnson. “He was my friend. He cast a big circle in the community, that’s for sure.”

That vigil will be held Thursday at 7:00 pm (CT). You can learn more about Police Week events here.

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