TARPON SPRINGS, Fla. — Five years ago, in the early morning hours of December 21, 2014, Tarpon Springs Police Department lost one of their very own in the line of duty.
Officer Charles Kondek was responding to a noise call when he was shot and killed.
PINELLAS NEWS | The latest headlines from Pinellas County
Now, five years later, the Tarpon Springs Police Department and Officer Kondek’s family are making sure the community doesn’t forget him. On the fifth anniversary of his death, they held a memorial service in his honor at the Tarpon Springs Public Safety Building.
Hundreds of people gathered at the service to honor Officer Kondek and express their support to his family and fellow officers.
“To see this much support five years later is really impressive,” said Teresa Kondek, Officer Kondek’s wife.
It’s that support that helps the Kondek family through events Charles wasn’t able to make, but TSPD has stepped up in his place.
“They’re always a phone call away and trust me, I have called,” said Teresa.
Now, the Kondek’s and Tarpon Springs Police Department are making sure Officer Kondek’s legacy lives on.
“You see his name on the building, you walk down you see the patrol room with a chair in his honor, patrol room named after him, see the street named after him,” said Major of Operations Michael Trill with the Tarpon Springs Police Department.
TSPD even began incorporating Officer Kondek’s story into their officer training.
“He’s an inspiration to keep going,” said Trill.
TSPD’s police chief said they plan to hold memorials in Officer Kondek’s honor in the future as well.