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Families of Fallen Heroes

Faces of The BackStoppers

Faces of The BackStoppers is a moving new video showcasing the families we assist and how your support has impacted their lives.  Help us raise awareness of the need to support the families of fallen heroes by sharing the video today.

Thank you for your support!

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Congratulations, Joe Strehl!

Joe Strehl, son of fallen hero Det. Stephen Strehl EOW 11/19/93, graduated from the St. Louis County Police Academy last night.  Congratulations, Joe!  We’re honored to have been a part of your journey to becoming an officer with the St. Louis County Police Department.  You have accomplished a great deal, and will be a fantastic officer.  Thank you for giving back to The BackStoppers and allowing us to share your successes.  We wish you the very best of luck in your new career!

Photo Credit US Deptartment of Justice DEA St. Louis Division



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Newsletter Volume 1, Issue 2

The second issue of The BackStoppers Newsletter has mailed!  Read about three families who’ve benefited from The BackStoppers’ assistance, a local firefighter who’s giving back and going pro, and more in Volume 1, Issue 2.

We wish to thank Jerry Kiske, Jr and Mulligan Printing, Firefighter Dave Marlo and the Professional Firefighters of Eastern Missouri IAFF Local 2665 , Repco Solutions, and everyone who shared their story with us to make this issue possible.

If you would like your street address added to our newsletter mailing list, please contact us at backstoppers@backstoppers.org.

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Bulltown’s Biggest Year

The 5th Annual Bulltown Run for BackStoppers raised $5,000 in it’s biggest year yet!  This year’s event was held in honor of Paramedic Jonathan Noce, EOW 5/25/2016, whose family The BackStoppers has begun assisting.  Running and walking in his memory were participants aged 8 to 84, including Jonathan Noce’s family.

The run, organized by great BackStoppers supporters BackStoppers of Jefferson County, included two fun new elements this year: the Bulltown bull mascot and a first responder wave.  The Arnold-Imperial Leader included the Bulltown Run for BackStoppers in its most recent publication.  See the full story below.

Thank you to everyone who organizes the Annual Bulltown Run and volunteers their time each year.  Thank you to everyone runner, walker, and first responder wave participant for being a part of this event.  Congratulations on your biggest year, and thank you for supporting our mission!

Arnold-Imperial Leader Article Bulltown Run for BackStoppers

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Assisting the Family of Paramedic Jonathan Noce

The BackStoppers is now assisting the family of Paramedic Jonathan Noce of the Joachim-Plattin Ambulance District who died in the line of duty on May 25, 2016.

Paramedic Noce was serving with both the Joachim-Plattin Ambulance District and Osage County Ambulance District.  He is survived by his wife and two daughters.

Our thoughts and prayers are with Paramedic Jonathan Noce’s family, friends, and co-workers.

Paramedic Jonathan Noce
Joachim-Plattin Ambulance District
EOW 5/25/16

With the addition of the family of Paramedic Jonathan Noce, we are now assisting 78 families with 65 dependent children and have assisted a total of 157 families since 1959.

 

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Heartfelt Words of Thanks

Last week, we learned that Joshua Ballman, son of fallen Officer Tom Ballman, had written a beautiful letter thanking The Corner Pub & Grill family of restaurants for their support of The BackStoppers.  We were very touched by his kind words.  It quickly became clear Joshua’s letter had a big impact on the community.  Comments of support and gratitude poured in on social media.  Many took time out of their day to share memories of Officer Ballman and tell Joshua he and his family remain in their thoughts.

The Corner Pub & Grill co-owner Brant Baldanza was no exception.  He recently posted his heartfelt response, which we’re happy to share here-

The Corner Pub & Grill Letter to Joshua Balllman

Letter from The Corner Pub & Grill family of restaurants thanking Joshua Ballman, son of fallen Officer Tom Ballman EOW 2/7/08.

We’re grateful to have the support of Brant Baldanza, Jon Fogarty, and everyone in The Corner Pub & Grill family to help us continue our mission.

It is an honor to help Joshua and his family.  He’s a wonderful person, of whom we’re very proud.  Joshua’s letter written from the heart is included here-

Joshua Ballman's Letter to The Corner Pub & Grill

Letter from Joshua Ballman, son of fallen Officer Tom Ballman EOW 2/7/08, thanking The Corner Pub & Grill family of restaurants for their great support of The BackStoppers

Officer Tom Ballman was killed in the line of duty on February 7th, 2008 when a man opened fire on a City Council meeting in Kirkwood, MO.  After fatally shooting Sgt. Biggs outside, the gunman entered the meeting and approached and shot Officer Ballman.  The man then killed three others and wounded two more.  Officer Ballman had served with the Kirkwood Police Department for 9 years and was the department’s spokesperson and community service officer.  He had previously served with the St. Charles County Sheriff’s Department for two years.  He is survived by his wife, son, and daughter.  We are eternally grateful to Officer Tom Ballman for making the ultimate sacrifice for our safety.

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Assisting the Family of Officer Ronald Strittmatter

We have just learned of the line of duty death of Officer Ronald Strittmatter of the Lakeshire Police Department and are now assisting his family.  Officer Strittmatter suffered a heart attack at home on January 3, 2015 following a shift during which he was on multiple calls.

Officer Strittmatter retired from the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department after 24 years of service and had served with the Lakeshire Police Department for 4 years.  He is survived by his wife and son, both of whom are police officers with the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department.

Our thoughts and prayers are with Officer Strittmatter’s family, friends, and co-workers.

Officer Ronald Strittmatter

Officer Ronald Strittmatter
Lakeshire Police Department
EOW 1/3/15

With the addition of the family of Officer Ronald Strittmatter, we are now assisting 76 families with 63 dependent children and have assisted a total of 155 families since 1959.

 

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Assisting the Family of Sgt. Peggy Vassallo

The BackStoppers is now assisting the family of Sgt. Peggy Vassallo of the Bellefontaine Neighbors Police Department who died in the line of duty on August 24, 2015 while standing outside of a vehicle.

Sgt. Vassallo ran the D.A.R.E. and Neighborhood Watch programs and was the community relations officer for the department. She is survived by her husband and adult children.

Our thoughts and prayers are with Sgt. Vassallo’s family, friends, and co-workers.

Sgt. Peggy Vassallo

Sgt. Peggy Vassallo
Bellefontaine Neighbors Police Department
EOW 8/24/15

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Assisting the Family of City Marshal of Miramiguoa Village Kevin Dziejma

The BackStoppers is now assisting the family of City Marshal of Miramiguoa Village Kevin Dziejma who died in the line of duty on May 18, 2015 during a traffic stop.

Marshal Dziejma served as the City Marshal of Miramiguoa Village for five years.  He is survived by two adult children, one of whom is a law enforcement officer in our coverage area.

Our thoughts and prayers are with Chief Dziejma’s family, friends, and co-workers.

Dziejma-K

Chief Kevin Dziejma
City Marshal of Miramiguoa Village
EOW 5/18/15

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Assisting the Family of Firefighter/Engineer Larry W. Lawhorn

The BackStoppers is now assisting the family of Firefighter/Engineer Larry W. Lawhorn of the Orchard Farm Fire Protection District who died in the line of duty on May 3, 2015 while en route to a structure fire in Portage des Sioux.

Firefighter Lawhorn was a 17 year member of OFFPD and served with the St. Charles Fire Protection District 19 years prior to his time with Orchard Farm.  He is survived by his wife and two adult children, one of whom serves as a firefighter in our region.

Our thoughts and prayers are with Firefighter Lawhorn’s family, friends, and co-workers.

Lawhorn

Firefighter/Engineer Larry Lawhorn
Orchard Farm Fire Protection District
EOW 5/3/15

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