Battle Creek ‘Officer of the Year’ honored; fallen officers remembered

Posted at 7:30 PM, May 19, 2015
and last updated 2015-05-23 17:52:49-04

BATTLE CREEK, Mich. -- Tuesday afternoon, the Battle Creek Police Department remembered men and woman who've fallen in the line of duty. The ceremony took place at city hall.

Chief Jim Blocker said, "To date, 2015, we're at 46 officers who've lost their lives in service to this nation."

It's been 10 years since Battle Creek police detective LaVern Brann lost his life. His family was in attendance and was recognized. A public announcement was made that a portion of the I-94 business loop will be named in Brann's memory.

Crime lab specialist Todd Rathjen spoke before a packed audience. He accepted the 'Officer of the Year' award.

Rathjen said he was initially hesitant to accept the award because of the hard work and dedication of everyone in the department. He said everyone makes a valuable contribution.

"If it brings good attention to the things that our officers do then it's good attention. We got some really great people who work here and do some really great things all year long. They need to be recognized for that," Rathjen said.

Those who won "Officer of the Month" for 2014 were also recognized.

Blocker said, "We recognize also today our many law enforcement partners in the room, first responders, dispatchers, and citizens who have assisted us along the way, and the good work and service that you all do in our community."