Lakewood plans to create memorial for its 4 fallen officers

May 14, 2010 

The City of Lakewood will create a memorial for its four police officers who lost their lives six months ago.

On Monday, Lakewood City Manager Andrew Neiditz announced that the architect and the contractor behind the city’s $12.6 million police station, which opened last year, have offered to donate their services for the officers’ permanent tribute.

There’s been no decision about what the memorial will look like or where it will be located. The city hinted that the memorial could be complete by the anniversary of the shootings, but it hasn’t given a completion date.

Architect Peter Rasmussen, founding principal at Architects Rasmussen Triebelhorn in Tacoma, said he wants to design the memorial because it’s a “noble purpose.”

He added that the job would have special meaning for him, as he helped design the station where Sgt. Mark Renninger and officers Tina Griswold, Ronald Owens and Gregory Richards worked.

“We sort of became part of the family when we were designing the station,” Rasmussen said of the police force. “We got to know many of the people who use it now.”

Lakewood officials have discussed creating a remembrance to the four officers who were gunned down by Maurice Clemmons at a Parkland coffee shop Nov. 29.

Across the South Sound, there have been plenty of other tributes to the officers, as well as to Kent Mundell, a Pierce County Sheriff’s deputy who was fatally wounded during a domestic violence call Dec. 21.

Last Friday, the sheriff’s department unveiled Mundell’s freshly inscribed name on a memorial wall outside its South Hill precinct.

But Lakewood, a city that continues to try and heal from its loss, does not want to rush.

“What we really would like to do is make sure the process that develops is sensitive to the families and the officers,” Rasmussen said. “That’s what’s important.”

A committee that will include the victims’ families and officers will help decide what the memorial will look like.

“You’ve got a number of entities, so whatever we’re doing we want to make sure to do it right,” said Lakewood spokesman Jeff Brewster.

Brent Champaco: 253-597-8653

brent.champaco@thenewstribune.com

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