Fallen Sedgwick County sheriff’s deputy honored with Congressional Badge of Bravery
WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) - A fallen Sedgwick County sheriff’s deputy has become the first law enforcement officer in Kansas to be honored with the Congressional Badge of Bravery Ceremony.
Deputy Robert Kunze III died in the line of duty on September 16, 2018. He served 12 years with the Sedgwick County Sheriff’s Office, and six years with the Shawnee County Sheriff’s Office, prior to that, after graduating from Washburn University with a degree in criminal justice.
Friday morning, U.S. Senator Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) presented Kunze’s family with the Badge of Bravery, one of the highest honors to be bestowed upon an officer.
“FBI Director Christopher Wray told me a few weeks ago that becoming a law enforcement professional takes a very special kind of person that is willing to put his or her life on the line to protect complete strangers and for that, the whole country is grateful for their service. Deputy Kunze exemplifies this very special kind of person,” said Moran.
Along with Kunze’s family, the deputies working on the day Kunze died were also in attendance.
“I know this is a bittersweet day, but I can’t express enough how important it is that we recognize Robert for his actions that day. And this is probably the biggest award that can be bestowed upon a law enforcement officer,” said Sheriff Jeff Easter.
Rep. Ron Estes said Kunze exemplified an outstanding officer who deserved to be recognized for his heroism and selflessness.
“I also want to note that his bravery and heroism didn’t begin on that day. We know that his exemplary 12 years in the Sedgwick County Sheriff’s Department were marked by his service, care, compassion and humor. Deputy Kunze’s service to our community and his calling to service stood out on that day as well as every other day that he served. "
The Congressional Badge of Bravery is awarded annually to officers who “engage in exceptional acts of bravery while in the line of duty. Often, such acts place the officers involved at personal risk of injury or result in their sustaining a physical injury.” K
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