BARDSTOWN, KY (WAVE) - A large crowd gathered Tuesday night at The Farmer's Market Pavilion in Bardstown to remember fallen Officer Jason Ellis.
The Bardstown community is still hurting from the May 25, 2013 murder of Ellis. Those who couldn't be in the Nation's Capitol for the National Police Officer's Memorial to honor him wanted the family to know they were there in their hearts and minds.
Those in attendance paid tribute to the fallen officer with both their memorial t-shirts and their words. Fittingly a rainbow, a symbol of God's smile hovered over the ceremony as the grandparents of Jason's widow, Amy Ellis, lit a candle. Those who attended the event showed the family their solidarity while still carrying the pain of not knowing who's responsible for taking their beloved officer, father and friend.
Bardstown Police Captain Tom Roby told the crowd, "In 2012 Bardstown was voted the most beautiful small town in America; I venture to guess in 2013 we were the most heartbroken small town in America."
The tragedy also moved the community to wrap its arms around the Ellis family and realize how their officers truly put their lives on the line everyday.
Chaplain Tom Mobley said, "I have never seen a community respond the way you did and continue to do."
Eric Johnson of Supporting Heroes reminded everyone of all those remembered this week, "It is not how these officers died that made them heroes, it's how they lived and truly there's no greater love than to lay down his life for his friends."
Ellis family friend Rebecca Buzick told us of the hometown supper for the officer's widow, "It's a good thing for Amy to see this," she said. "She needs the love and the prayers to pull through this time because it's really hard for her so she needs Bardstown strong to be there."
A candle lighting ceremony at the end of the service stood for strength, hope and light, something Ellis will always be remembered for.
The Bardstown remembrance was held 12 days before the anniversary of the officer's death. It is the only public ceremony as family and friends plan to honor Ellis in private.
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