Bricks being sold for Police Memorial

Published 1:41 am Sunday, March 22, 2009

The Picayune Police Department is selling engraved bricks to be used in the construction of a new memorial that will be erected in front of the department.

Chief Jim Luke said the memorial will be not only for police officers, but any law enforcement agency and the department has about 150 bricks available.

On Thursday, the first two bricks sold were commemorated. Judy McCaskell, Daisy McCaskell and Bonnie McCaskell pitched in together to purchase a brick to remember their father Lt. J.B. McCaskell. He was a member of the Picayune Police Department from about 1958 until his death in 1970, Judy McCaskell said.

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The second brick will be in honor of former Chief Brenda Smith.

So far about 25 of the bricks have been sold and the department hopes to sell the rest before they make their order for engraving on April 1.

Luke said the memorial will be made of black granite and will be lighted at night. Urns and flowers will border the memorial and a shrine will be erected in the lobby of the department that will feature photographs of past officers. The department currently has photographs from as far back to 1957. The department is looking for citizens who have old pictures they would like to donate to the shrine. Old badges, patches or anything from past service also will be accepted and displayed.

“The whole front hall here is basically going to be a shrine to the police department,” Luke said.

Present officers and staff and department awards also will be featured in a separate case in the lobby.

So far the community response to the department’s efforts have been overwhelming, Luke said.

Anyone interested in purchasing a brick or donating items for display can call Kris Landrum at 601-798-8653 or Ginger Bennett at 607-798-6829.