Remembering fallen officers
IT HAS been 26 years since Senior Constable Richard Whatman was handed his badge beginning his career as a police officer.
Despite the longevity of the Hervey Bay’s officer’s time in the force, National Police Remembrance Day is always one filled with deep emotion.
This year especially being his last as he prepared to retire in three weeks.
“(Yesterday) was a very, very big day on the police calendar and very emotional as we remember those who never made it home after their shift,” he said.
“To be asked to be a part of the flag party was an absolute honour being my last remembrance day.”
Each year, police officers, police liaison officers and other staff members come together to remember those who have died in the line of duty.
The ceremony was held at LifeChurch on Friday.
There are currently 145 Queensland officers on the honour role which District Officer Wide Bay/Burnett Superintendent Craig Hawkins said was 145 too many.
“In the future we’d like to not have any more but the reality is there’s every chance the number will increase,” he said.
“As a police officer every day you never know what you’re going to experience.”
Constable Whatman may be saying goodbye to the force but he has no plans to stop attending Remembrance Day.
As for post retirement plans, he has yet to make plans.
“About a year ago I was thinking I should get myself organised for what I want to do but before I knew it I had a month to go,” he said. “I’m looking forward to life after the police force though.”
REMEMBERING THE FALLEN: Senior Constable Richard Whatman reminisces on 26 years of service and remembers his fellow officers in the line of duty.