Law enforcement honors fallen heroes at Civic Plaza

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The sounds of bagpipes and the 21-gun salute filled Albuquerque Civic Plaza as law enforcement agencies honored those lost in the line of duty.

Among those gathered were Mike Garcia and his family. They paid tribute to his daughter Angelic Garcia.

On March 4, 2001, Angelic lost her life in a crash while on duty as a BCSO deputy. She was just 26 years old.

With every year that passes, it doesn’t get easier for the family.

“It’s hard. I miss her a lot,” Mike Garcia said.

In a walk no parent ever wants to do, they walked to the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office building Thursday to see Angelic’s name memorialized on the wall.

“She has a beautiful smile like her mama. She always smiled, she was always smiling,” her father said.

The Garcia family was one of many who gathered Thursday to remember their loved ones. Albuquerque Police Chief Harold Medina acknowledged this emotion and pain felt by them.

“I know it was a difficult day, probably almost about the third time I’ve almost broke out in tears over this – but we will not forget those that we’ve lost,” Chief Medina said.

Mayor Tim Keller spoke about the four Bernalillo County first responders who died in a helicopter crash last year near Las Vegas.

“Undersheriff Lt. Fred Beers, deputy Michael Levinson, Bernalillo County Fire Department rescue specialist Matthew King, again, giving their lives in a different line of duty, a line of duty tried to protect those under siege from fires up north,” Mayor Keller said.

BCSO Sheriff John Allen also highlighted the characteristics of every fallen hero.

“This profession requires a special kind of person. You need to be strong, courageous, passionate, caring,” Sheriff Allen stated.

Characteristics, these fallen heroes lived and died by.