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Basketball game honors fallen officers

By Jason A. Smith

jsmith@henryherald.com

Public safety officials in Henry County will gather Saturday for the first of two charity events to remember law enforcement officers who have died in the line of duty.

The Henry County Sheriff's Office, along with the Henry County Fire Department, will sponsor a charity basketball game, at 4 p.m., at Henry County High School.

The purpose of the event is to raise money to send members of the Sheriff's Honor Guard to attend the National Police Memorial Services, which will be held May 12, in Washington, D.C.

According to Henry Sheriff's Chief Deputy David McCart, organizers of the game hope to raise at least $250 by way of donations. The total cost to send the honor guard to on the trip is about $5,000.

In addition, the fifth annual Blue vs. Brown exhibition game is scheduled for May 3, at 4 p.m., at Stockbridge High School.

The charity games became an annual event following the death of Henry Police Sgt. Jimmy Gilbert, who was killed in an automobile accident May 2, 2004. The following year, Feb. 16, 2005, Police Officer Chuck Haist died in an on-duty crash. Henry Sheriff's Deputy Marvin Scarlett lost his life May 20, 2007, in a collision in his patrol car.

Chief McCart said the games serve as a way to recognizes officers who have given their lives.

In addition, the chief noted that all proceeds from the Blue vs. Brown game in May, will go to pay for Deputy Scarlett's family to attend the memorial services in the nation's capital.

"During that week, the honor guard will try to take the family out to dinner each night," McCart said. "The money is going to be used to cover some of that expense."

The cost for admission to next month's event is $2 for adults and $1 for children under 12.