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Squad Partner Remembers Four Slain Brothers

Squad Partner Remembers Four Slain Brothers

Source: Associated Press

The Seattle Times via YellowBrix

November 29, 2010

LAKEWOOD, Wash. — The four stars tattooed on Dave Crommes’ left forearm are in memory of his slain colleagues.

A photo of officer Ronald Owens is taped to the center console of Crommes’ Lakewood police car. It reminds him of the partner and close friend he lost a year ago.

“It’s been a struggle, obviously,” said Crommes, 39 and a sergeant in the department. “Some days are worse than others.”

The police department and the city are marking the anniversary of the deaths of Sgt. Mark Renninger and officers Greg Richards, Tina Griswold and Owens by dedicating a new memorial to them at the department’s headquarters and by collecting donations for a food drive.

Crommes was on the same squad with Owens, Renninger and Richards. Usually he would have been with them at the start of their shifts Nov. 29, 2009, while they got coffee and something to eat at the Forza coffee shop at 11401 S. Steele St. in Parkland.

But he took the day off as he always does to celebrate his birthday.

“It’s an annual thing my wife and I do,” said Crommes, who is married and has three children.

Griswold worked the shift instead and died with the others when Maurice Clemmons opened fire in the worst single attack on law enforcement officers in Washington state history.

In a recent interview, Crommes didn’t want to talk about what he was doing on that Sunday. Instead, he wanted to focus on the loss of his colleagues.

“They were great officers, great people,” he said.

Crommes and Renninger had worked together for 14 years. Both had been officers with the Tukwila Police Department. When the Lakewood department took shape in 2004, both applied. Crommes said it was a good opportunity to be closer to home and part of an agency from the beginning.

On Jan. 1, 2009, the men paired up again on a seven-officer patrol squad that included Owens and Richards. Crommes also wanted to work with Owens, a close friend.

The two became partners and patrolled the city’s South End, which includes the Tillicum and Woodbrook neighborhoods. They’d stop at Owens’ house for lunch during their shifts and get together for family gatherings or to watch sporting events outside of work.

Crommes wasn’t as close to Richards and hadn’t worked much with Griswold. But they were part of a good crew, Crommes said.

“It’s good to work with people who have a good work ethic,” he said. “You enjoy going to calls with them.”

Crommes was in Seattle when he heard about what happened in the Parkland coffee shop.

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  • Sfa_iv_max50

    revCCBeasley

    over 3 years ago

    2944 Comments

    It is good feeling for sharing memories it helps.

  • Fake_sunset_max50

    arroyol

    over 3 years ago

    696 Comments

    rip

  • Pug_max600_max50

    DALLASCRANE

    over 3 years ago

    19382 Comments

    The story that rips your heart out. The land of the Free, because of the Brave. RIP Brothers. Until we meet again.

  • 041711141420_max50

    CAHPson

    over 3 years ago

    122 Comments

    My heart ache's everytime I here this story. On a side note, that SGT has a lot of stripes! Must be a great police officer! Stay safe out there all LEO's!

  • Ba_old_glory_max50

    Jonas

    over 3 years ago

    42222 Comments

    Maybe some good comes out of this tragedy after all.......

  • Photo_user_banned_big

    BrooklynHillsCop

    over 3 years ago

    664 Comments

    We all remember this tragedy.
    R.I.P. Brothers and Sister! May God bless your souls.

  • Ocala_me_max50

    kodiakbhr

    over 3 years ago

    308 Comments

    RIP, and may we all rRemember to Never Forget, These 4 Officers and All who have made the Ultimate Sacrifice.

  • 1051193310_l_max50

    95Zcar

    over 3 years ago

    3992 Comments

    Prayers and like Allen705 I remind you to be alert at all times, on and off duty.

  • Jack_bauer_max50

    Allen705

    over 3 years ago

    1466 Comments

    Iv read the report on how this happened, remember guys watch your six and try to keep your guard up. Its just that easy to lose you or a brother's life in less than two minutes.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    coprock12

    over 3 years ago

    18 Comments

    My wife and I met Sgt. Crommes not long after this happened. He is an exceptional Officer and I am glad he decided to continue in law enforcment.
    RIP brother Officers/

  • Memorial_max50

    Saintsfan157

    over 3 years ago

    114 Comments

    RIP brothers

  • Iphone_002_max50

    policeryan

    over 3 years ago

    852 Comments

    RIP brothers

  • C1__67__max50

    Redsky

    over 3 years ago

    2918 Comments

    RIP

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Anonymous

    over 3 years ago

    RIP brothers

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