The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) honored the Texas Troopers, Special Agents and Texas Rangers who have lost their lives in the line of duty, including Trooper Thomas Nipper and Trooper Damon Allen, who were both killed in the line of duty in separate incidents in November 2017. The 2018 DPS Peace Officer Memorial Service was held at the DPS Headquarters in Austin, and Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick was the guest speaker. More than 300 guests, including various law enforcement officials, family members of fallen DPS officers and DPS employees attended the event.
“Our law enforcement officers are the backbone of our state, protecting our families and loved ones from danger, and today, we pay tribute to those who have made the ultimate sacrifice,” said Lt. Gov. Patrick. “We mourn our fallen heroes, including Trooper Nipper and Trooper Allen, who both died in the line of duty last year. I want to extend my heartfelt sympathies to the families of all the peace officers who have given their lives while protecting their communities. It is our duty to make sure their service and sacrifice is never forgotten.”
Since 1823, 221 officers serving the Texas Rangers and DPS have died in the line of duty. According to the Officer Down Memorial Page, 135 officers across the country were killed in the line of duty since last year’s DPS Peace Officer Memorial Ceremony on May 16, and 18 of those brave law enforcement officers served in Texas. During the same time, our nation lost 22 law enforcement canines in the line of duty – one of those canines served in Texas.
“Law enforcement is a profession that requires dedication, skill and immense courage, and the men and women we have lost were extraordinary officers who exemplified bravery and sacrifice in their service to their communities,” said Texas Public Safety Commission Chairman Steven P. Mach. “Today, we pay our respects to our fallen heroes, including Trooper Nipper and Trooper Allen, and we thank them for standing on the frontlines between us and danger.”
Family members of DPS Senior Trooper Nipper and Trooper Allen placed a memorial wreath during the ceremony. Trooper Nipper was killed when his patrol car was struck from behind on Nov. 4, 2017, while conducting a traffic stop in Bell County. His family members in attendance included Tammy Nipper, his widow; Michael Nipper, his son; Lori Nipper, his daughter; and Amy Schmoyer, his daughter. Trooper Allen was fatally shot during a traffic stop in Freestone County on Nov. 23, 2017. His family members in attendance included Kasey Allen, his widow; Madison Allen, his daughter; Cameron Allen, his son; Kaitlyn Allen, his daughter; and Sue Allen, his mother.
“Without hesitation, our Troopers walk into the line of danger every day to serve and protect their communities,” said DPS Director Steven McCraw. “Not a day goes by that we don’t remember the fallen heroes who have died protecting their communities. Today, we pay our respects to their families, and honor the everlasting legacy of these officers and their dedication to protecting and serving the great state of Texas. Trooper Nipper and Trooper Allen personified this bravery and dedication, and their selfless sacrifice will never be forgotten.”