SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) - Two Springfield police officers are standing guard over a monument that honors the department's fallen heroes. That's because Officer Kevin Ambrose was killed in the line of duty, one year ago Tuesday. The officers will stand vigil here through the night until 7:45AM Wednesday.
Tuesday was a somber day in Springfield.
The flag outside the police station on Pearl Street flew at half mast. Residents tied blue ribbons, and lit blue lights. A monument was guarded in tribute to those who died in the line of duty. An empty patrol car with badge number 7. It's the badge of Springfield police officer Kevin Ambrose.
People came to pay their respects.
"I just want to say thank you to them for all their hard work. I hope that Springfield can, with their efforts, become a little safer for all of us," said Linda Cuevas of Springfield.
At the end of March a 'Hometown Hero' Award was posthumously bestowed to Officer Ambrose by the Red Cross for his bravery in the line of duty. Something his colleagues told 22News they won't ever forget.
"You always question whether or not you can answer the call. Kevin answered the call. He saved two lives, and in my mind, he's a hero," said Springfield Police Sgt. John Delaney.
Ambrose was killed while responding to a restraining order situation at the Lawton Arms Apartments.
Sgt. Delaney told 22News that since Ambrose' death, only police officers will deliver a restraining order. A Springfield Police Detective told 22News their policy has always been to send more than one officer to a domestic dispute.
"To me, a domestic call is the number 1 probability for officers to be either hurt or killed in the line of duty because it can go from zero to 10 in a matter of seconds," said Detective Luz Lizarribar.
Officers told 22News that just like September 11th, they'll never forget where they were or what they were doing when they learned about the death of Officer Ambrose.
He served the department for 36 years.