Special to the Journal
Albany Panthers game against the Columbus Lions on Saturday, May 14 has been labeled “Heroes Night” at the Albany Civic Center. The Panthers will honor the service of the nation’s armed services personnel, veterans, firefighters, EMS personnel, law enforcement members and teachers. The Panthers will also pay special honor to the memory of slain Dougherty County police Lt. Thomas C. “Cliff” Rouse. Kickoff is at 7:30 p.m.
Rouse, who was shot to death Dec. 23, 2010 while apprehending a burglary suspect, started his law enforcement career in 1992. He was promoted to sergeant in September 1999, and to lieutenant in 2000. He was was the first Dougherty County police officer killed in the line of duty in the 84-year history of the department.
In Rouse’s honor, the Albany Panthers will donate a portion of each “Heroes Night” ticket sold to the Cliff Rouse Memorial Fund.Members of all groups can purchase tickets to the Panthers against the Columbus Lions for the group discount price.
“As a veteran police officer, I want to thank the Albany Panthers for hosting a night that will directly support our fallen comrade. We are grateful to have this opportunity to honor the service and sacrifice of Lt. Rouse in a venue that we understand he would have loved so much,” said Dougherty County Police Chief Don Cheeks. “Lt. Thomas C. Cliff Rouse truly represented all that is good and noble about the law enforcement profession, his service to the citizens of Dougherty County is sorely missed.”
“The Panthers organization is honored to donate and help the family of Lt. Rouse, whose sacrifice allows us all to live in peace and security. We will play in tribute and respect to him each time we take the turf this season,” said Will Carter, Albany Panthers General Manager.