Service Honors Hillsborough's Fallen Deputies
The memorial takes place tonight in downtown Tampa.
Fourteen men and one woman will be rememberd at this year's memorial service for fallen deputies, including Sgt. Ronald Harrision, a 27-year veteran, who died after he spearheaded an operation on State Road 60 to keep drunken drivers off the streets.
Also on the list is rookie Deputy David Abella, a Plant City High graduate and 26-year-old father of three, who died when his patrol car hit a curb and slammed into two utility poles on 50th Street north of Causeway Boulevard.
Abella was the first Hillsborough deputy in 17 years to die in the line of duty. His funeral services were at the First Baptist Church of Brandon.
Harrison taught DUI classes throughout the state. A family man nearing retirement, he was killed Aug. 17, 2007, shortly after he left the 7-Eleven on South Kings Avenue, not far from where a sign in his honor stands today, just west of the intersection of Kings Avenue and Lumsden Road.
Harrision was shot to death by a man with a reported 23 arrests on his record.
The most recent loss the sheriff's office has faced was the death of Deputy Mark Longway, 48. He died following a traffic crash in downtown Tampa.
In April 2009, Longway was credited with helping save a man who threatened to jump off the roof of a business on Fletcher Avenue, according to his obituary on TBO.com. The North Tampa Chamber also honored him as Law Enforcement Officer of the Month in June 2007.
Longway was a 21-year Air Force veteran who joined the sheriff's office in 2004.
The first death recorded by the sheriff's office was in 1874 when Deputy Richard Roach was shot to death while sitting in a chair at his suburban Tampa home. His murder remains unsolved, according to the sheriff's office's website.
Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office Annual Fallen Heroes Memorial
- The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office has posted bios of the fallen deputies being honored at the May 3 memorial at Heroes Plaza at Cotanchobee Fort Brooke Park in Tampa, next to the Tampa Bay History Center.
- The memorial begins at 7:15 p.m. and the public is invited.
Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office's List Of Fallen Deputies
(Source: Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office. Links to news reports are included in some instances.)