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New Canaan Pauses To Salute Fallen Officers

Even 20 years after his death, the memory of New Canaan Police Officer James A. “Marty” Martin remains fresh in the minds of the people who worked with him.

“It’s important for us to remember an officer who gave his life in the line of duty,” said Police Chief Ed Nadriczny. New Canaan police, firefighters and emergency responders took time Thursday during a special memorial service to honor Martin and other officers lost in service. The memorial is part of National Police Week.

The emergency responders lined up in two rows to salute the fallen officers and saluted as New Canaan High School senior Becky Thompson, 18, played "Taps" to memorialize the fallen.

Martin died July 24, 1991, after being electrocuted by a downed power line. Members of Martin’s family, including his parents, James P. and Mary Martin; his wife Lauren; and his son C.J., were in attendance.

The service also recognized New Canaan Chief Constable Louis Drucker, who was shot and killed in 1888 while attempting to serve a warrant to a man selling liquor without a license. Drucker’s murderer, Jacob Scheele, was hanged for his crime and was the last man executed by hanging in Fairfield County.

Nadriczny also mentioned J. Clifford Dietrich, a former New Canaan officer who died in 1973 in a helicopter crash while he was a member of the U.S. Secret Service.

James P. Martin said it’s nice that the New Canaan force pays tribute to his son. “I think it’s good they’re doing this and people still remember him,” he said.

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