Provided by Prince William County
More than 3,500 people gathered Tuesday at the Hylton Memorial Chapel in Dale City to remember Prince William Police Officer Ashley Guindon. Guindon was responding to a domestic altercation on her first shift as a sworn Prince William County police officer Saturday evening when she was shot and killed. Two other officers were injured during the incident as well.
So, on Tuesday, with the sun shining and the flags waving in the breeze, family, friends, colleagues, law enforcement officers from across the country and members of the community came together to honor Guindon’s sacrifice and reflect on her passion to serve others. PWL Governor Terry McAuliffe joined Chairman Corey Stewart, Supervisors Anderson, Caddigan, Candland, Jenkins, Lawson and Nohe of the Board of County Supervisors, as well as members of Congress and the Virginia General Assembly, to show their support for the family and law enforcement community.
People waited for hours outside in a line that circled the chapel to pay their respect to Guindon. Inside, people hugged each other and shed tears as they spoke with Guindon’s mother and family.
Father Gerard Creedon, of Holy Family Catholic Church, spoke at the ceremony of Guindon’s love of all living things and her desire to be a police officer. He spoke of Guindon’s desire to help others. “She sought the life of a peacemaker. Blessed are the peacemakers. She sought to resolve conflict and, in her name, let us all study the ways and the methods of conflict resolution. She was a police woman and a peace officer. May we all learn, in her name, to wage peace.”
Prince William Police Chief Steve Hudson thanked all those who came and spoke of Guindon’s drive and spirit. Guindon served in the Marine Corps Reserve, interned with the Prince William Police Department’s Forensic Services Bureau and worked as a pre-hire in the department’s Special Victims Unit. She also volunteered extensively with the county’s Suicide Prevention Program. “We stand here today to celebrate the amazing life, a life all too short, but amazing nonetheless. She had accomplished more in 28 years than I think I could in 100. It was her desire to serve, to be involved in things that mattered, to give her life for something worth giving it to, and that’s exactly what she did.”
Known to her friends as bright, ambitious and kind-hearted, Guindon loved traveling, dancing, reading and her pet pug, Scout. Hudson said the memory of Guindon would remain with members of the department. “Ashley will never leave you. She will be a part of your life from here on. Her strength will inspire you. Her passion and drive will keep you moving day in and day out, helping you get through these painful days and weeks and months.”
Hudson hearkened back to Creedon’s remarks. “Blessed be the peacemakers for they will be called children of God,” Hudson said quoting scripture. “That’s an amazing and humbling thing to hear from God’s word, but it’s also an inspiring message that tells us the very unique place we hold in creation. Hold onto that thought. Hold each other up.”
Following the ceremony, attendees filed out of the chapel and lined the drive to pay final tribute as Guindon’s flag-draped casket was carried out. Bagpipes played and color guards from around the region stood at attention with their flags. Then it was time to for Officer Guindon’s final call or “End of Watch,” which sounded over the public safety radios.
“1145, Prince William calling 1145. This is the final call for 1145, Officer Ashley Guindon, End of Watch, February 27, 2016. May you rest in peace. Prince William Clear 13:58 hours.”