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Phoenix ceremony honors federal, local agents who died in line of duty

(KTAR News Photo/Peter Samore)

PHOENIX — More names are added to a federal law enforcement memorial, including a fallen deputy U.S. marshal from Tucson.

The death of Chase White while chasing a dangerous fugitive still hurts his former boss.

“Even five months later, I wake up in the middle of the night thinking that it was still a nightmare,” said David Gonzales, the U.S. marshal for Arizona.

He says ceremonies like the one in north Phoenix on Wednesday help him remember the sacrifices his brethren make. It memorialized members of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Marshals Service and the FBI who died in the line of duty since the agencies were founded.

In his speech, Gonzales drew a link between White and the Marshal Service’s first in-duty death in 1794 in Athens, Georgia.

“These two episodes, separated in time, across the expanse of 224 years, reminds us of the dangers and sacrifices so often associated with upholding the law,” Gonzales said.

The federal ceremony also honored three local peace officers who died in the line of duty in the past year: Arizona Department of Public Safety Trooper Tyler Edenhofer, Phoenix Police Officer Thomas Rutherford and Salt River Police Officer Clayton Townsend.

“These things are so emotional, but it reiterates my love for law enforcement and the people that are part of it,” said Doug Coleman, DEA special-agent-in-charge for Phoenix.

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