Photo Credit: nleomf.org
Honoring The Fallen
Rebuilding Shattered Lives
Rebuilding shattered lives of survivors and co-workers
affected by line of duty deaths through partnerships
with law enforcement and the community.
WHO WE ARE
We are a
501(c)(3) non-profit organization funded by grants and donations.
We assist agencies with line of duty funerals and processing State/Federal benefits for the family.
We provide support for families and co-workers through peer support retreats and counseling programs to navigate through the grief of losing their fallen hero.
We are here to help keep
Fallen Officer’s memories alive, so they are not forgotten.
On May 14, 1983, on the eve of the second annual National Peace Officers’ Memorial Service, ten young widows gathered around a table and talked about the tragedies that had fallen on their families that year and truly shattered their lives. Each and every widow had suffered the loss of their law enforcement spouse in the line of duty.
After hours of sharing their burden of grief and their tales of abandonment by the law enforcement agency, a young widow from Eau Claire, WI, Lynn Bolton (now BeBeau) approached Suzie Sawyer, then FOP Auxiliary National Secretary and Memorial Service Coordinator, and stated, “This is the greatest thing that has happened to me in the past year. I have finally found people who understand what I am having to deal with. Next year couldn’t we have a seminar?” Suzie Sawyer replied, “And what would we talk about — death?” “Yes,” the young widow replied. “Somebody needs to talk about death in law enforcement!”
On May 14, 1984, Concerns of Police Survivors, Inc., was officially organized. On that date, 110 law enforcement survivors from across the country gathered for the first annual National Police Survivors’ Seminar held in Washington, DC. On this date, the survivors voted unanimously to organize C.O.P.S. as a totally separate entity from any police organization so the needs of any law enforcement surviving family could be met regardless of what police political affiliation the officer had with various police labor organizations.
C.O.P.S. membership is over 47,000 survivors. Each year, between 140 and 160 officers are killed in the line of duty and their families and co-workers are left to cope with the tragic loss. C.O.P.S. provides resources to help them rebuild their shattered lives. There is no membership fee to join C.O.P.S., for the price paid is already too high.
Survivors include spouses, children, parents, siblings, significant others, extended family and affected co-workers of officers killed in the line of duty. C.O.P.S. is governed by a National Board of law enforcement survivors. All programs and services are administered by the National Office in Camdenton, Missouri.
National C.O.P.S. programs for survivors include the National Police Survivors’ Conference held each May during National Police Week, scholarships, peer-support at the national, state, and local levels, “C.O.P.S. Kids” counseling reimbursement program, the “C.O.P.S. Kids” Summer Camp, “C.O.P.S. Teens” Outward Bound experience for young adults, special retreats for spouses, parents, siblings, adult children, extended family, and co-workers, trial and parole support, and other assistance programs.
C.O.P.S. knows that a survivor’s level of distress is directly affected by the agency’s response to the tragedy. C.O.P.S., therefore, offers training and assistance to law enforcement agencies nationwide on how to respond to the tragic loss of a member of the law enforcement profession.