Fallen Officer's family invited to Nat'l Police Week
(KATV) Conway - The family of a fallen Conway officer learned they're heading to Washington D.C. for a special memorial.
Officer William McGary was just 26 years old when he died from injuries he sustained, when he was hit by a car while directing traffic around an accident.
Officer McGary died on February 1, one day after the incident. His family isn't ready to talk, but allowed Channel Seven to join them.
Officer William Michael "Will" McGary's mom, dad and sister were asked to go to the Conway Police Department Wednesday.
Joe Beffa with the Barwick-Newton Law Enforcement Fund says, "There are organizations out there that take care of the spouses at the time of an officer killed in the line of duty, but nobody was there for the families."
The family was told they're going to Washington D.C., in May 2014.
Beffa explains, "There is a big family there of people who have died in the line of duty and the survivors are all in the same boat, suffering tragically."
The McGary's will see their son's name etched in the memorial during National Police Week. "Along with that, they're with people that experienced the same loss, the loss of a family member and they get to have constant counseling and talk among peers," Beffa says.
It's all made possible because of the Barwick Newton Law Enforcement Memorial Fund, created by two families of fallen officers who saw the need to help families with the financial hardship. Beffa says, "We started this in 2005, we sent 4 officers in the first year and last year we sent 18."
It's going to cost about $8,000 to send the McGary's for the whole week to Washington D.C. Every dollar raised for the foundation goes to help families of fallen officers, because it's not 'if' it's 'when' will the next family need to go to National Police Week.
We are only three months into the year and already 22 officers have died in the line of duty in the U.S. Tuesday, a police chief in Mississippi was hit by a car. You'll recall Officer Will McGary was killed when a car hit him. This year vehicle related police deaths are up 40-percent.