GPD Honor Guard
The Garland Police Honor Guard was established after the on-duty death of Officer Gerald Walker in November of 1989. Until then, the Garland Police Department had not had an officer killed in the line of duty since the department was established in 1951. The Honor Guard first started with 15 members and over time, increased to 30 members. Most of the Honor Guard members are assigned to the Uniformed Operations Division.
Units of the Honor Guard
The Honor Guard is divided into four major units:
- Arms Detail
- Casket Guard
- Color Guard
- Flag Folding Detail
All members of the Honor Guard are cross-trained in each unit and are able to perform in all positions.
The Arms Detail is responsible for the care and use of the Honor Guard shotguns. The detail consists of seven Arms Guards and a Detail Commander. The Honor Guard carries Mossberg 500A shotguns. The weapons are used in 21 gun salutes and parades. Members spend many hours in military drill maneuvers to establish and maintain their high level of proficiency.
The Casket Guard Detail is responsible for standing guard over a fallen officer. The detail performs their duty using silent commands when posting and relieving the detail members. The Casket Guards stand at each end of the casket and remain with the fallen officer until he is laid to rest.
The Color Guard is responsible for carrying the flags of the Garland Police Department. The detail consists of seven members, two end guards, and four flag bearers. The flags are the United States Flag, the Texas Flag, the Garland Police Department Flag, and the Honor Guard Flag. The Garland Police Department flag carries battle streamers for each of Garland’s fallen officers:
- Officer Gerald Walker
- Officer M.D. Moore
- Officer Ronnie Lerma
The flag detail also marches in many parades and performs at opening ceremonies on special occasions.
The Flag Folding Detail is responsible for folding the flag that covers the fallen officer’s casket. The flag is folded at the casket and then presented to the fallen officer’s family.
The GPD Honor Guard attends many Texas Peace Officers’ funerals in the state as a tribute to the fallen officers. The Honor Guard has also performed several funerals for other police departments that do not have their own Honor Guard. The Garland Police Department Honor Guard has received the Best Overall Honor Guard trophy for the state of Texas.