First Oklahoma Sheriff, Killed In 1908, Gets New Headstone - News9.com - Oklahoma City, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports |

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First Oklahoma Sheriff, Killed In 1908, Gets New Headstone

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OKLAHOMA CITY -

The first Oklahoma sheriff to be killed in the line of duty in 1908 was George Washington Garrison. He was shot and killed by a suspect he was trying to arrest in a hayfield back in 1908.

The Oklahoma County Sheriff's Office discovered that Garrison was buried in an unmarked grave 100 years after his death. But as it turns out, a local retired lawman already had a new headstone in the works.

The new marker stands four feet tall, the text tells Sheriff Garrison's story, and most importantly it leaves behind a well-deserved law enforcement legacy.

“Isn’t it beautiful?” Sharron Kirkwood asked. News 9 was with her during her first time seeing the stone in person.

Her husband, Herman, was the one who made it happen.

“He would start looking for these graves and there’d be no headstone and he’d say, ‘Man, this is sad.’”

9/18/2015 Related Story: Deputy Wants To Honor Oklahoma Sheriff Killed Over A Century Ago

Herman was a retired Oklahoma City police officer, turned history buff with a mission to make sure fallen police officers had proper memorials.

“It was just something that he could do that he loved,” Kirkwood said.

And about a year before the sheriff's office made the discovery, Herman was already gathering funds and designing the stone for Garrison. But a few months before it was ready to be placed at the sheriff's plot, Herman passed away.

“He was a wonderful man. He was loved by a lot of people,” Kirkwood said about her husband of 50 years.

She is sure Herman's legacy will continue to live on through everyone who loved him and now through the work he did to honor others.

“It’s his final tribute,” she said about Garrison’s stone.

Now that Garrison has a proper headstone, the Oklahoma County Sheriff's Office is holding a memorial ceremony for him on Thursday. There will be a 21-gun salute, a wreath laying and Sheriff John Whetsel will speak.

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