MARION, IL (KFVS) - The Illinois Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) State Lodge will host a "Law Enforcement Appreciation Cookout" on Tuesday, October 11 in Marion, Illinois.
The event will be held at Ray Fosse Park, located at 500 East Deyoung Street, in Marion.
The cookout, which begins on Tuesday at noon, is open to all area law enforcement personnel. It is sponsored by the FOP State Lodge, State Troopers FOP Lodge 41 and Williamson County FOP Lodge 197.
The State FOP Disaster Response Unit will be there and hamburgers and hot dogs will be served. Anyone who supports local law enforcement is encouraged to attend.
"Law enforcement officers aren't often thanked for the dangerous and demanding work that they do, so we wanted to let southern Illinois' finest know that we respect and appreciate their service," FOP State Lodge President Chris Southwood said. "Recently, law enforcement in southern Illinois has been negatively portrayed in some media venues, often under the claim of wanting to 'initiate a conversation.
"The inflammatory images and narrative have often encouraged continued mistrust and division, rather than the understanding, unity and cooperation that are necessary to keep our communities safe and free. Our October 11 event is designed to encourage law enforcement and the communities they serve to move forward together and to show our appreciation for the friends, relatives and neighbors who serve the public as members of the law enforcement family."
The Fraternal Order of Police, founded in 1915, is the largest organization of sworn law enforcement officers in the United States. With a proud tradition of officers representing officers, the FOP is the most respected and most recognized police organization in the country. The Illinois FOP, chartered in 1963, is the second largest State Lodge, proudly representing more than 34,000 active duty and retired police officers - more than 10 percent of all FOP members nationwide.
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