In recognition of a VA police officer killed in the line of duty, Gulf Coast VA Chief of Police Services Keith Bradley participated in an annual run in May dedicated to fallen VA police officers.

Bradley ran the 3.1 miles in honor of VA Police Officer Marvin Bland, a Marine Corps Veteran killed in an automobile accident while responding to a fire alarm at the VA hospital in Bedford, Massachusetts.

“Officer Bland was – and will always be – part of the police services brotherhood. To take part in a run dedicated to him and other VA police officers killed in the line of duty is an honor,” said Air Force Veteran Bradley. “Our job creates a unique bond among ourselves as we assist our Veterans with integrity, commitment, advocacy, respect and excellence – the values our police officers hold dear.”

Nine VA police officers have died in the line of duty

Since 1985, nine VA police officers have lost their lives in the line of duty.

The annual VA-wide 5K run is part of National Police Week, an observance that recognizes law enforcement officers. National Police Week was established in 1962 by President Kennedy, who also proclaimed May 15 as National Peace Officers Memorial Day.

Along with recognizing law enforcement officials’ continued efforts, National Police Week pays special recognition to those law enforcement officers who have lost their lives in the line of duty for the safety and protection of others.

Bradley added that the dozens of VA police officers at the Gulf Coast Veterans Health Care System’s five facilities in three states are dedicated to ensuring the Veterans and other eligible beneficiaries they serve are safe when attending appointments, as well as ensuring the organization’s daily operations run smoothly.

Honoring a fallen officer

Chief of Police F. Keith Bradley and Cpl. Jason Attaway

Dedicated to helping and protecting Veterans

“As VA police officers, our efforts are concentrated on the safety of our nation’s heroes and their families when they visit our facilities,” he said. “We’re often the first person a visitor can encounter at the Gulf Coast Veterans Health Care System. We’re committed to ensuring every Veteran who comes through our doors has a positive experience – if that’s providing directions to a building of the facility or helping with an automobile issue or simply engaging the men and women reliant on us for any sort of assistance, we’re dedicated to helping.”

The Gulf Coast Veterans Health Care System is comprised of the Biloxi VA Medical Center and the Mobile, Pensacola, Eglin and Panama City community-based outpatient clinics. Headquartered in Biloxi, Mississippi, the Gulf Coast system provides a variety of medical outpatient services to more than 82,000 Veterans and other eligible beneficiaries along the Mississippi, Alabama and Florida Gulf Coast.

By Bruce Cummins is a public affairs specialist at the Gulf Coast VA

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Published on Jun. 8, 2022

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One Comment

  1. John Duffey June 10, 2022 at 7:49 pm

    I retired as Bedford VAMC Chief of Police in 2013.

    Marvin was a good friend of mine and we were working together on the night of the accident.

    Please express my deep appreciation to Chief Bradley for his remembrance of Marvin.

    John Duffey

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