Tributes continue for two fallen police officers in Barron County months after their deaths

Published: Jul. 19, 2023 at 5:23 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 20, 2023 at 3:56 PM CDT
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BARRON COUNTY, Wis. (WEAU) - The memory of fallen officers Emily Breidenbach and Hunter Scheel still consume Chetek Police Chief Ron Ambrozaitis.

“We’re never going to forget Emily, or Hunter. I think the people that come to this community that didn’t know them two officers are definitely going to know that they gave the ultimate sacrifice at their job for their community, for their county,” said Chief Ambrozaitis.

Monday night, the Barron County Board unanimously approved a resolution to name the 6 mile stretch of County Road SS, connecting Chetek and Cameron, “The Officer Emily Breidenbach and Officer Hunter Scheel Memorial Highway.” It will take days for the signage with the road name to go up.

Both officers were shot and kill on that road on April 8th just outside the Village of Cameron.

While Chief Ambrozaitis said he and his department would wish to not remember the tragic day, he is grateful for the gesture.

“I hired Emily. That girl sat in my office with her packet. It’s tough. It’s really tough. We’re a small department. In a lot of ways, these are my children. It’s going to take a while. This isn’t something that we’re going to get over in a month or two. It’s going to take us years to get over,” said Chief Ambrozaitis.

The Chief said he also continues to be there for Cameron Police Chief Adam Steffen.

“He’s a fairly new chief. He’s been chief for a couple years now. I helped him through a lot of the first time stuff they’re going through,” said Chief Ambrozaitis.

Community members are also showing their support in creative ways.

Wood Carver Leesa Syryczuk is carving out an eagle at the Barron County Fairgrounds, in tribute of Emily and Hunter.

She said she spoke with some law enforcement officers to see how they thought it should be put together.

“I asked them on their input on how they wanted to see it. They put their neck out on the line for us. This is more a memorial to Hunter and Emily, but it’s an honor for all the officers for all they do,” said Syryczuk.

She hopes to have it done by Friday, and will be placing it by the flagpoles at the Barron County Fairgrounds.