WASHINGTON, DC (WAVE) - It’s been five months since Charlestown Police Sergeant Benton Bertram was killed during a police pursuit.
Wednesday, members of Bertram’s family and fellow officers from the Charlestown Police Department got the chance to honor his memory and his sacrifice in the nation’s capital as part of the National Peace Officers Memorial Service.
Thousands of officers from all around the country poured into the U.S. Capital to take part in the memorial service as part of police week. The officers there have come to honor their fallen brothers and sisters in blue.
In the months since losing Sgt. Bertram, his fellow officers said the days haven’t gotten easier without him.
“It doesn’t. It does not,” Major Jason Broady with Charlestown Police said.
The journey to D.C. for the entire department, their families, and Bertram's family was paid for solely through community donations and fundraisers.
The community's commitment to making sure they could come to DC to honor Bertram is overwhelming, Broady said.
“Those folks are always here for us and we’ve known that for years. But to see it come through the way it has has been amazing,” Broady said.
At the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial, Sgt. Bertram's memory lives on. His name is now a part of the memorial forever, photos from friends and family members show just show loved Sgt. Bertram was.
Photos of Bertram's beloved K9s there with him on the memorial. Candles and memories show Bertram's personality and spirit hundreds of miles away from home.
Broady said the department plans to keep Bertram's memory alive in Charlestown, putting in a tribute to him and to all fallen officers in their soon to be completed new police department.
“But there will be something special in there for him that we’re going to do," he said. “It all goes back to the community and how great everybody’s been for us when we needed them.”
The trip to D.C. has surrounded the department and Bertram’s family with love and support from others grieving similar losses.
"You know, there's lots of things here that are difficult to endure and to be a part of when you've lost someone so close to you," Broady said. "But you also have to remember why you're doing it and why you're here and that's for him. We're not here for us, we're here for him. We're here for his family and we want to make sure they're okay and know they've got support in us."
For the officers, the trip to Washington D.C. hasn’t been easy - but helps ensure Bertram’s memory will live on.
"You know, we're never going to forget him," Broady said. "We're always going to remember him."