The deaths in the line of duty of two Central Kentucky first responders — a police officer and a paramedic — are reminders of the grave risks taken by a few to keep the rest of us safe.
On Wednesday, flags will fly at half-staff in honor of Richmond police officer Daniel Ellis, who was gunned down by a robbery suspect and parole violator on Nov. 4.
The 33-year-old officer will be buried in Dunnville Cemetery in Casey County, near Taylor County where he grew up.
Ellis was ambushed, allegedly by a convicted petty thief and methamphetamine-maker who was an armed suspect in an attempted robbery earlier that day outside a Richmond convenience store.
Ellis, a seven-year veteran of the Richmond force, and another officer followed leads to an apartment, where the accused had hidden in a bedroom after reportedly telling a companion he did not intend to go back to prison — a plan that did not work out for him.
The suspect was wounded by another officer and is being held at the Kentucky State Reformatory in La Grange on $2.5 million bond.
Ellis and his wife, Katie Elizabeth Gruenwald Ellis, an assistant principal at Madison Central High School, have a 4-year-old son, Luke Michael.
Jessamine County paramedic John Mackey died Monday after being hit by a car while responding to an emergency call Nov. 5.
Remembered as larger than life and a teddy bear when dealing with children, Mackey, 40, continued to serve even in death as an organ donor.
Our condolences to the grieving families.
We hope that those who serve on the front lines of public safety may take some solace from the outpouring of public prayers and support. We mourn the loss of these good men and are grateful for their service.