BCSO reveals wall dedicated to Metro 2 helicopter crash victims

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – This holiday season is an emotional one for the Bernalillo County first responders following the deadly helicopter crash earlier this year. Those emotions ran deep as the Bernalillo Sheriff’s Office unveiled a new memorial wall Tuesday dedicated to all the deputies that lost their lives while on duty.

The sheriff’s office wanted a place to honor their sacrifice that wasn’t in D.C. but close to home, so family can come visit.

“Remembering, reflecting, and paying respect to those that made the ultimate sacrifice,” is what BCSO Sheriff Manuel Gonzales said the wall represents.

Honoring the 10 first responders who lost their lives while wearing the badge. 

“We wanted to do something on behalf of the ones we don’t want to forget, so that’s what this is about the unveiling of the memorial wall,” Gonzales added.

The names on the wall date back as far as 1930 all the way to 2010, and then the Metro 2 crash earlier this year.

“On July 16, we faced one of the worst tragedies in the history of New Mexico, and definitely within the sheriff’s office,” said Gonzales. 

To memorialize their story, the sheriff’s office hired a local woodworker. 

“I was blown away from it. It was a huge honor knowing that this is going to be seen by dozens of people, it was nerve wracking but humbling,” said David Franklin. 

Each flag Franklin designed represents a fallen hero.

“I knew that the blue line was going to be very important, so I tried to do the design around that. We also wanted to make sure we added the story behind how they passed while serving the county, so that is why the second plaque is there to give details,” said Franklin. 

Now a hallway in the sheriff’s office is a way for visitors to learn about their sacrifice. 

“It was kind of emotional being able to go through everybody from 1930 all the way up until this past July. Being able to see their story, what they were doing while they were on shift, how they passed,” Franklin added.

It’s also a chance to visit with old friends. 

“I look at it as a way to look back on their careers maybe have a remembrance of them and a way to just think about them,” Gonzalez said.

The plaques took Franklin two weeks to create and is now a permanent feature at the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office Headquarters.