HUNTSVILLE, Ala. —
A fallen officer-- memorialized. The Huntsville community came together to say goodbye to officer Billy Clardy III, and honor his service.
A name etched into stone. Officer Billy Clardy III, will not be forgotten.
Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle speaks during the memorial service and says, “This is one of our first gatherings since the pandemic. And there’s no more fitting of a gathering to be had than to honor Billy Clardy. Billy was somebody special.”
Clardy was shot and killed during a drug investigation on Dec. 6, 2019. Mayor Battle reflects on Officer Clardy’s impact. He adds, “He was a special person. He was a special person, a special cop. He loved his job and he did his job to the highest of all standards,”
Law enforcement say, they’re thankful to even be able to gather today.
Huntsville Police Chief, Mark McMurray, says, “It’s a very special moment. But, it’s a difficult time during “Police week” to go through this. This is one week every year we dedicate to our fallen officers. And yet this is a week, because of our coronavirus pandemic, that we’ve had to cancel every memorial in the country.”
But, because of Governor Ivey’s “Safer at Home order” allowing groups to gather in larger numbers-, the officers and family are able to honor Clardy.
After 14 years of service with HPD, Billy Clardy III’s name is etched into a brick in the HPD memorial; one laid right beside the name of his father, Officer Billy Clardy Jr., who was also killed in the line of duty.
And out of the tragedy, something beautiful is born. The Clardy Memorial Scholarship at Calhoun Community College has been started. Chief Mark McMurray and his family made the first donation to the scholarship during the service.
A representative from Calhoun says, “It marks our first criminal justice scholarship at Calhoun. So, it makes it even more special.”
Another representative from Calhoun says, “I know that a simple ‘thank you’ to officer Clardy and his family is inadequate; but, maybe in some way-- the ‘thank you’s will be forever with this scholarship in his honor.”
Calhoun Community College is inviting the community to give whatever they can to help bring up the next generation of leaders. For more on how you can give, click here.