Beaulieu recognized with Star of Texas award

Marilyn Tennissen Sep. 12, 2007, 6:22am

Beaumont police officer Lisa Beaulieu

Beaumont police officer Lisa Beaulieu was among 27 law enforcement officers and first responders to receive the Star of Texas Award from Gov. Rick Perry. The annual award is given to recognize officers killed or seriously injured in the line of duty and to honor the first responders' commitment to protecting the safety of the state's citizens.

Award recipients and families of fallen officers joined Perry at the state capital on Sept. 11.

Officer Beaulieu was killed on April 27 while assisting with traffic control at the scene of a motor vehicle accident. She was struck by an oncoming vehicle, and died three hours later from her injuries.

"We are honored to be in the presence of so many heroes today, those who are here in person, and those who live on in the memories of their loving families, their fellow officers, and the lives of a grateful citizenry," Perry said. "These are not people who think first of their own safety. Instead, these are people who not only swear an oath, but live it out in full measure of their integrity, bravery and unassailable character. The recipients of these awards are the finest our state has to offer; they are noble patriots, selfless servants, and our brave protectors."

In 2003, legislation was passed creating the Star of Texas Awards, which honors and commemorates selected first responders who were killed or seriously injured while performing their duties as peace officers, firefighters and emergency medical first responders. During this past session, Perry signed HB 1164 into law, expanding honorees to include federal law enforcement officers or special agents seriously injured or killed in Texas while assisting a state or local law enforcement agency.

The 78th Legislature passed a law designating September 11 as Texas First Responders Day. This observance also coincides with the national recognition of Patriot Day, which remembers those who lost their lives in the terrorist attacks in 2001.

"If anyone had become blind to the everyday valor of our peace officers, firefighters, emergency medical first responders, or federal law enforcement agents, the events of six years ago reminded us of their courage in no uncertain terms," said Perry. "Our nation wept for each of the thousands of innocent people who died that day, including the 479 first responders whose first thought was not for their own safety, but to serve and protect."

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