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Updated Feb 13, 2014 - 12:33 pm

Phoenix honors city employees lost in line of duty

Memorial service for fallen Phoenix employees Feb. 13, 2014. (KTAR Photo/Jim Cross)

PHOENIX -- The City of Phoenix honored three employees Thursday who were killed while on the job.

The 20th ceremony paid tribute to Police Officer Daryl Raetz and firefighter Brad Harper, who died the same weekend last year and firefighter Brandi Schamadan.

Harper died after he was crushed between two fire vehicles. Raetz was killed while working the scene of a DUI arrest, where he was struck by a car.

Schamadan died in March from cancer developed from chemical exposure while fighting fires.

Families for all three attended the service. Raetz's wife Stephanie said it has been a year of memories and staying strong for her 6-year-old daughter Tatum.

"It's really and not something I'd be doing. It's emotional being here," she said. Were he alive, she said she would tell her husband, "I love you and thank you."

Mayor Greg Stanton, Vice Mayor Bill Gates, Fire Chief Bob Khan and Police Chief Daniel Garcia joined the families for the 90-minute service.

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About the Author


Position: Senior News Reporter. Started with KTAR July 4, 1999.

Favorite spots in Arizona: Pinetop-Lakeside, Alpine, Greer.

Have covered some of the biggest stories in Arizona including nine of the top 10 largest wildfires in state history. The Wallow Fire in 2011 became the largest fire in state history. Rodeo-Chediski Fire in June 2002, which is the second largest fire in Arizona. Covered the Yarnell Hill Tragedy in June 2013 that left 19 Granite Mountain Hotshots dead.

Favorite movies: True Grit, both 1969 John Wayne classic and the remake with Jeff Bridges and Lonesome Dove.

Sports Teams: Washington State University Cougars, Texas Longhorns, The University of Montana Grizzlies.

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