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Fallen Law Enforcement Officers Honored and Remembered at Ceremony in Harrison County

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CLARKSBURG -

The FBI CJIS center in Clarksburg held its annual memorial ceremony in honor of fallen West Virginia Law Enforcement Officers on Thursday.

It's held not only to remember those officers, but to also honor their commitment to serving and protecting the public.

The names of those men and women who were killed in the line of duty were read at the ceremony. There were 125 of them.

One of those names stands out to residents of Harrison County, Derek Hotsinpiller.

"Personally, Derek Hotsinpiller, being one of our own so to speak. It's really hard for a lot of the officers and this helps us to maybe have a better understanding,” said Chief John Walker, with the Bridgeport Police Department.

Charleston Police Department Lieutenant Eric Johnson spoke to fellow officers, family members, and guests, about his story.

"Over a career of almost 24 years I've had some experiences, some great ones but I've also had some that weren't so great. You come to a memorial service such as this one today and as you speak about some of those occasions it stirs emotion,” said Johnson.

Johnson explained that he knew a fallen officer, Jerry Jones, and that he was almost one of them as well.

He explained that during a stop a suspect took a gun out and shot him multiple times.

"It almost did happen to me once. Because I came so close, maybe the advice I have for other officers will be taken more seriously. It's our responsibility to learn from those experiences,” said Johnson.

Lieutenant Johnson said one of the most important things law enforcement can do is to learn from those who have fallen.