CHICAGO (WLS) -- More than 200 Chicago police officers departed for Washington, D.C., Friday morning to support the families of four fallen colleagues.
CPD Commander Paul Bauer and Officers Samuel Jimenez, Eduardo Marmolejo and Conrad Gary all died in the line of duty in 2018. They will be remembered at National Police Week events in the nation's capital.
A fleet of Chicago police vehicles departed CPD headquarters Friday morning bound for Washington to make the fallen officers' families visit as safe and familiar as possible.
"We will be there to remember these officers for their dedication. To remind the wives and children of these men that the individuals we lost will never be forgotten," CPD Supt. Eddie Johnson said at a press conference Friday morning.
Officer Conrad Gary's wife has been a widow for just five months. She may never remember her dad personally, but their infant daughter, Tess, smiled proudly holding a plaque memorializing her young father's career.
Officer Marmalejo's family, too, will be alongside them in Washington, just as the Officers Gary and Marmalejo were when they died in December.
The Chicago police officers are traveling to Washington at their own expense, where the families will meet with President Donald Trump, congressional leaders, and federal officials during the memorial.
"These four officers' lives were taken from them last year. The least that we can do as a department and a city is wrap our arms around them," Johnson said.
While in Washington, the immediate families of Commander Bauer and Officers Jimenez, Marmolejo and Gary will be personally escorted to the events by Johnson and their commanders.
"Finally to Paul, Sam, Eduardo, and Conrad, I know you're looking down on us I promise you all that we're doing everything we can to take great care of your families just like you took great care of this city," Supt. Johnson said.
The Cook County Sheriff's Office will join departments around the county Friday at the 18th annual Cook County Peace Officers Memorial Ceremony, which will also honor fallen officers.
A silent police motorcade departed Morton College in west suburban Cicero around 10:30 a.m. and traveled Cermak Woods Forest Preserve in south suburban Lyons.
The memorial was hosted by the Peace Officers Memorial Foundation of Cook County, a non-profit organization dedicated to honoring all area officers killed in the line of duty.
Chicago area police travel to Washington to honor fallen officers