Packers honor law enforcement officers: 'Protect & Serve Award'

Honoring those who serve and protect from all corners of our state, the Green Bay Packers recognized law enforcement who went above and beyond in a special ceremony Wednesday, May 25. 

Ten finalists were honored in Green Bay.

"Everyone in this room is heroes," said Waukesha Police Chief Daniel Thompson. "The families and officers with them are heroes."

At the inaugural Packers Protect & Serve Awards, 10 officers, teams or whole departments from across the state were recognized for going above and beyond the call of duty.  

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Half of the recipients honored Wednesday are from the FOX6 viewing area. 

"We do good work," said Milwaukee Police Detective Andy Wilkiewicz. "Much more, almost all the time we do good work.  There’s a lot of incredible people who do incredible things in this room."

In January, Wilkiewicz was off duty when he was shot four times while trying to stop a robbery at the Shake Shack near Water and Buffalo.

"Overall, I’m feeling pretty good," said Wilkiewicz. "I still have some nerve pain I’ve been dealing with since Day 1."

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In the wake of the Waukesha Christmas parade tragedy, the entire Waukesha Police Department was honored. 

"What I saw with the community coming together as one. It wasn’t the police or just citizens," said Thompson. "We were all in it together."

In his speech, Thompson encouraged other departments to look after officers’ mental health, especially after such heartbreak. Thompson says his department continues to heal. A network of support makes it all worth it.

"Their spouses, their children, they are all heroes," said Thompson. "Every day we go home, that’s who we are going home to.  It doesn’t stop at work."

The recognition from the people they serve means a lot, too.

Wednesday’s honorees received a $2,000 grant.  The money can be used for their department or a nonprofit.  The Packers and NFL Foundation fund the event and hope to make this an annual event.