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Lower Police Hold Annual Memorial Service for Fallen Officer

 

By Jack Fichter

VILLAS — Lower Township Police Department marked the 16th anniversary of the line of duty death of Officer David C. Douglass with a solemn ceremony Feb. 18 at Town Bank Fire Hall.
He was shot and killed on Feb. 18, 1994 after responding to a suspicious person call in North Cape May. Douglass was pursuing a burglary suspect on foot when the suspect turned and shot him.
Douglass returned fire, struck the suspect in the hand, and made it back to his patrol car to call for assistance, but he did not survive the attack
Following an intensive investigation, Lower Township police arrested the suspect in New York City in April of that year. He was later found guilty and sentenced.
A flag raising ceremony included two generations of heirs to the David C. Douglass name, his son David C. Douglass Jr., 28, who became a corrections officer with the county Sheriff’s Department this year after graduation from the county Police Academy, and his infant son, David C. Douglass III.
Lower Township Police Chief Edward Donohue held Douglass III. He said his grandfather would have been out helping residents in the recent blizzard as the rest of the police department did putting in 16-hour days.
Lower Township Mayor Michael Beck, a former Philadelphia police lieutenant, said it always seemed the nicest officers were the ones that lost their lives in the line of duty. He also acknowledged the work of police, volunteer firefighters and public works employees during the epic storm.
Douglass’ widow, Debbie, placed a memorial wreath at the flagpole of Town Bank Volunteer Fire Company where her husband also served as a volunteer firefighter.
David C. Douglass Jr. told reporters it was an honor to be a part of the ceremony remembering his father after raising a flag to half-staff in front of the fire hall.
A number of retired officers were present for the ceremony as were representative of other area police departments and staff from the David C. Douglass Memorial School.
At 7:15 p.m., all of Lower Township’s fire sirens will be activated in memory of Douglass.

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