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Memorial Service Held Honoring Fallen Special Agents

FBI Springfield May 12, 2009
  • Special Agent Marshall Stone (217) 522-9675

As part of National Police Week, the FBI held a Special Agent Memorial Service to honor the 54 FBI special agents killed in the line of duty. Attorney General Eric Holder, Deputy Attorney General David Ogden, FBI Director Robert S. Mueller, III, and former FBI Directors William H. Webster and Louis J. Freeh participated in today’s ceremony, marking the 30th year the ceremony has been held at FBI Headquarters. Hundreds of FBI employees attended the service to honor the sacrifices of the fallen special agents and their families.

“Every May, when we join together in remembrance of our fallen heroes, we are reminded of the risks the men and women of law enforcement face each and every day, and of the courage they must demonstrate in confronting those risks,” said Attorney General Eric Holder.

“We come together today because we have not forgotten the cost of freedom. We have not forgotten the sacrifices these men and women have made on our behalf, nor have we forgotten the sacrifices borne by the families and friends of those we have lost,” said Director Mueller.

On August 9, 1979, three special agents were shot and killed in two separate incidents, thousands of miles apart. In response, FBI Director William Webster held a memorial service at FBI Headquarters. One week later, a public memorial service was held in Washington, D.C., evoking a tremendous outpouring of sympathy and support. The following August, Director Webster formalized the tradition, and the first Special Agent Memorial Service was conducted at FBI Headquarters. It has been held every year since.

In 2005, Springfield lost one of our own when Special Agent (SA) Robert R. Hardesty died on June 2, 2005, as a result of an accident during SWAT training at the FBI Academy on May 25, 2005, in Quantico, Virginia. SA Hardesty, 40, was assigned to the Springfield FBI Office at the time of his death and was a member of the SWAT team. Prior to joining the FBI three-and-a-half years earlier, he served in the Porter County, Indiana, Sheriff’s Department. In his honor, the Springfield FBI Office now bears his name.

Robert R. Hardesty Building (5/12/09)

Hall of Honor
FBI Agents Killed During the Performance
of Law Enforcement Duty

Special Agent Robert R. Hardesty (5/12/09) Special Agent Robert R. Hardesty (5/12/09)
1965 - 2005

For more details on all of the special agents who were killed in the line of duty or as the result of an adversarial action, visit our website at www.fbi.gov. The website’s history page contains a link to the Hall of Honor, which pays tribute to these heroic men and women.