Residents are invited to gather Friday night for an outdoor prayer vigil that remembers the bravery and dedication of K9 Officer Seara Burton.
With approval from Burton’s family, City of Richmond officials are offering the gathering at 6 p.m. Friday, Sept. 8, on the south steps of the municipal building, 50 N. Fifth St.
“Officer Burton was an exemplary officer,” said Richmond Police Chief Mike Britt in a news release. “She always put her duty first and served the community with passion. This vigil is an opportunity to celebrate the life and legacy of a truly remarkable officer.”
Richmond Mayor Dave Snow said it has been a difficult year for the city to fully reconcile with Burton’s loss. RPD’s first female K9 officer received a severe head injury while assisting with an Aug. 10, 2022, traffic stop. The 28-year-old died Sept. 18, 2022.
“Seara’s legacy is unquestionable,” Snow said in the release. “She, her family, our police officers, and our city team deserve this opportunity to gather and continue healing.”
Tributes continue flowing in for Burton around the county and state. A few examples:
Williamsburg Community Center has placed Burton’s name on its Wall of Fame. The wall was created recently to honor those who’ve played in the gym or used the gym as a stepping stone to further their careers. The 2012 Northeastern High School graduate was a basketball standout as a three-year varsity player.
Indiana’s American Legion selected Burton as its 2023 Law Officer of the Year. Burton’s family named Animal Care Alliance as their charity of choice for the $500 donation the Legion made in her name.
As previously announced, Wayne County Historical Museum’s new permanent display, “Seara Burton Legacy Exhibit: Service Before Self” opens at 9:30 a.m. Sept. 12, which will include Burton’s RPD vehicle, tribute items left on the city building lawn in the weeks after her injury, and personal memorabilia.
A version of this article appeared in the September 6 2023 print edition of the Western Wayne News.