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Ceremony honoring the deaths at the Ohio Peace Officers Memorial

Two Franklin County sheriff's deputies will be among the police officers who died in the line of duty and will be specially honored Thursday at the annual Ohio Peace Officers Memorial Ceremony.

According to a news release from the Ohio Attorney General's Office, the ceremony will take place at 11 a.m. at the Ohio Peace Officer Training Academy at 1650 Route 56 in London. Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost, members of the Ohio Peace Officer Training Commission and law enforcement officers from across the state will participate.

The ceremony will honor nine law enforcement officers who died between 2020 and 2023, including Franklin County Sheriff's Deputies Billy J. Ihrig and Terrance N. Bateman.

Ihrig, 52, of Hilliard, was a deputy sheriff for 17 years before he died on October 28, 2021, as a result of contracting COVID-19 in the line of duty. He was leader of FOP Capitol City Lodge No. 9 and former commander of William R. Schnug Memorial Post 614 Hilliard and VFW No. 4931 after serving in the U.S. Marine Corps for 13 years.

Bateman, 59, who died Jan. 15, 2022, was a deputy in the sheriff's office in the corrections division for 25 years. He also contracted COVID-19 while on duty and died as a result of the coronavirus.

The other seven are:

  • Patrolman Mark U. Heinl, St. Henry Police Department
  • Officer Gerald F. Lynch, police mentor
  • Officer Anthony E. Cloyd, University of Dayton Department of Public Safety
  • Corporal Matthew D. Mitchell, South Vienna Police
  • Officer Timothy J. Unwin, Springfield Township Police Department
  • Deputy Marcus L. Zeigler, Hamilton County Sheriff's Office
  • Deputy Joshua I. Hamilton, Preble County Sheriff's Office

Germantown Deputy Police Chief Orion Hale, who suffered a fatal heart attack while trying to arrest a suspect in 1957, is also included.

According to Yost's release, a total of 836 police officers in Ohio have died in the line of duty since 1823.

The annual memorial parade will depart at 10 a.m. from the Ohio State Lodge of the Fraternal Order of Police at 222 E. Town St. in Columbus.

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Anna Harden

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