Table Mesa King :On the steps leading to Boulder Police Department on Tuesday, everything Clint Tyson could think was, “Why Teri?”
Tyson was among the nearly 200 people that gathered at the department for a celebration in honor of the officer Eric Talley and the 9 others who were killed and wounded by a gunman who entered the Table Mesa King Soopers on March 22nd 2021.
Tyson was an employee who was working in the store the day of the incident and was able to escape safely. However, he was killed by his coworker along with his partner Teri Leiker, an experienced checkout clerk.
“We were planning on getting married this year on Valentine’s Day,” Tyson stated. “She was a great partner and friend, so it had to be done. I’m still healing.”
The city marked 1 year anniversary of the incident through an array of solemn remembrances and commemoration events held at the police station and an outdoor park in downtown. People in the community have said it was vital to pay tribute to those who were killed as the one year anniversary approached.
In the days prior to the funeral at the police station, the resident Kim Price placed a bouquet of white roses in a police vehicle that was parked in front of the front of the building as a memorial for Talley. Price claimed that her son was employed in Table Mesa. Table Mesa store the day that the shooting occurred and was able to escape without injury after law enforcement reacted.
Her son was not able to be present at the ceremony and she planned to join him at an evening gathering of King Soopers employees later in the evening.
“It’s just a debt I could never repay and it means a lot to be here,” Price stated. “It’s a good day too, because we’re all getting together as a family and just being together today.”
Local elected officials as well as the Boulder Chief of Police Maris Herold spoke at the ceremony, and emphasized Talley’s response to the store. Herold claimed could have stopped the shooter from killing more people.
Talley was part of the initial police officers to arrive to the site of the shoot according to police. When Talley’s funeral was held in the year 2000, police said nobody was hurt or killed after Talley was at the store.
“There is no doubt that Eric’s selfless bravery saved dozens of lives,” Herold declared. “Now, more than any time before, police need individuals like Eric. He was a true advocate for Boulder.
Herold introduced the creation of a new award that the department established in honor of Talley She is planning to award annually to an officer who demonstrates an “commitment to protecting the most vulnerable in our community.” The department also handed the commemorative pins featuring Talley’s badge number 295 and nine silver lines to honor the other victims.
“We will always remember March 22,” Herold declared. “But the events of that day will not define us.”
Table Mesa store Table Mesa store reopened to customers last month and was closed on Tuesday to pay tribute to the victims, as memorial events occur throughout the city.
The parking lot of the store was mostly unoccupied and closed from the general public. Family members of victims were permitted to put flowers and posters on the store’s entrance.
The Glen Huntington Bandshell on table mesa king
The speakers included Boulder’s mayor, City councilmembers, religious leaders, as well as Governor. Jared Polis, who urged everyone to pay tribute to the victims. The names of the victims were all displayed on a billboard at the stage of the bandshell as officials were introduced to the audience.
Polis acknowledged the snowy and cold weather when the crowd filled half of the benches made of wood. Many of them carried electronic candles and white roses.
“It hits home that it’s a cold spring day,” Polis declared. “For all of us, there’s loss in our heart.”
Polis was awed by the temporary memorial with flowers and signs on the fence that appeared during the aftermath of the shooting that took place last year. The memorial was later removed and preserved.
“It was such a powerful moment,” Polis declared. “It’s really just who we are.”
Mayor Aaron Brockett, speaking to the crowd, stated that his Boulder city council will declare March 22 as a day of commemoration.
“Every year our community will pause and celebrate their lives,” Brockett stated. “We will say their names out loud so in our hearts, they will live on.”
Following all the talks, Hannah George, a long-time Boulder resident, sat at a distance in silence as the crowd was dispersed. She admitted to being surprised by the size of the audience.
“I know it’s cold and people process grief differently, but I’m disappointed there aren’t more people here,” George declared. “This isn’t something you can simply put aside. We must admit this as a group.”
She became emotional as she recounted her feelings regarding the one-year anniversary.
“I hope people don’t shy away from their grief,” she declared. “It can feel colossal, but it also brings us together.”
In the opposite end of the park Sylvia Hermanson picked up a brochure from a table put on at the entrance of Boulder Strong, a community resource center that was established following the shooting, to help people overcome trauma and stress.