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Sign honoring fallen Phoenix Police Officer Paul Rutherford to be unveiled

Posted at 9:26 AM, Mar 13, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-13 12:26:54-04

PHOENIX — The City of Phoenix is preparing to put up a historical marker to honor fallen Phoenix Police Officer Paul Rutherford.

Rutherford died last March while helping motorists involved in a crash near 75th Avenue and Indian School Road. He was crossing the street when he was hit by a vehicle and killed.

Officers, friends, family, and the public are invited to attend a memorial service on Tuesday morning as the sign is unveiled near the area where Rutherford was killed.

The signs, colored red and blue for fallen firefighters and officers, are "so that our city never forgets the sacrifice that that individual made for our community," Sgt. Tommy Thompson told ABC15.

Thompson said the city began putting up the signs around 15 years ago after a police employee, Wally Olson, was inspired by a similar program elsewhere and brought the idea to Phoenix Police Department and city leaders. More than 50 of the historical markers have been put up around the city.

Daniel Drew, a sign specialist in the city's sign workshop, and his colleagues design and put together the memorial signs.

"When we do get that opportunity, it really stands out to us," he told ABC15. "There's meaning behind it. We take pride in what we do."