WEST LIBERTY – Village Marshal Sherman Ricketts, who gave his life to protect the residents of the village in the early morning on June 29, 1962, will be honored on June 29 with multiple events planned for that day.
Ricketts was investigating a break-in in the northwestern part of the village around Baird-Reynolds-Columbus Streets. He confronted the suspect who fired numerous rounds at point blank range to fatally wound the marshal. Ricketts, while suffering fatal injuries, shot the suspect twice to prevent him from fleeing.
The village of West Liberty will honor Ricketts on June 29 with the following:
-At 3:30 a.m., there will be a vigil in front of the West Liberty Presbyterian Church at the spot where the Marshal gave his life in the line of duty.
-A park was dedicated last May 2021 for the marshal and this year the amenities (shelter house, water bottle filling station, and bicycle fix-it station) of the park will be dedicated with a ceremony remembering the slain officer starting with a procession of Law Enforcement starting at the West Liberty Police Department at 2 p.m. and continuing west on Runkle Street to the Sherman Ricketts Memorial Park.
-The program at the park will start at 2:50 p.m. with the West Liberty United Church of Christ Reverend Debby Stinton offering the invocation. The Logan County Honor Guard will have a presentation of the flag to the grandchildren of Ricketts, the Rifle Squad will present a 21-gun salute and playing of Taps. The guest speakers for the event will share stories of the marshal and West Liberty Presbyterian Pastor Keith Landis will close with the benediction. The public is invited to attend and encouraged to bring a lawn chair.
The Sherman Ricketts Memorial Park and Trailhead is located on West State Route 245. Law enforcement parking will be provided on Bradley Street. Public parking will be across Route 245 at King Feed or at the village garage across Sidney Street in the grassy areas. Sidney Street will be closed from the Recycling Center to 245 in order to set up all the activities planned for that day.
The “Put A Lid On It” Campaign, a program to encourage children to wear helmets while riding bikes, will run from 4 to 7 p.m. on June 29. The Mary Rutan Foundation will fit children for bicycle helmets until the helmets are all gone. There will be 104 helmets to give away donated by the American Academy of Pediatrics, Ohio Department of Transportation, Honda, and the Mary Rutan Foundation. Helmets are for any children who come to the event. Children are encouraged to ride the Simon Kenton Bike Trail with WL bicycle police to learn about bike riding safety.
Info from Jill McKelvey