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Washington DOC Pays Respects to Fallen Texas Correctional Officer Mari Johnson

August 10, 2016

By DOC Communications

Texas Corrections Officer Mari Johnson

Texas Corrections Officer Mari Johnson

A delegation of Washington Department of Corrections employees paid tribute to Correctional Officer Mari Johnson, by participating in her memorial service July 23. Johnson was killed in the line of duty by an inmate at the Robertson Unit in Abilene, TX on July 17.

Secretary Richard Morgan sent his condolences to the Texas Department of Criminal Justice following Johnson’s death and sent three DOC employees to represent the agency at Johnson’s services. Monroe Correctional Complex Lt. Ronald Mui and Sergeant Jared Huttenstine participated on the Honor Guard, while Superintendent Mike Obenland represented DOC leadership at the memorial.

Upon arrival in Mansfield, TX., Lt. Mui noted that the same close knit community among correctional staff in our state extends to Departments of Corrections nationwide.

“It is difficult to convey the level of comradery and the bonds that are formed between the officers that attend these somber events,” said Lt. Mui. “It restores ones faith in humanity to know that our counterparts from all over the nation will come together as one unit to honor and pay respects when one of our own has fallen.”

Several states sent Honor Guard teams to the memorial including, Washington, Oregon, Nebraska, Oklahoma, California, Arizona, South Dakota, New York, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Connecticut, Rhode Island, and many Texas law enforcement departments.

Lt. Mui also shared Washington’s condolences with former Monroe Correctional Complex Officer Tony Johnson who is currently with the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.

“The Texas officers and family recognized and expressed their sincere gratitude for sending Washington state officials to pay our respects,” said Mui. “Words cannot express what it means to the family of the deceased officer and the positive impact such a gathering has on them during such a tragic time in their lives.”

Since Officer Jayme Biendl’s death in 2011, Washington Department of Corrections has sent Honor Guard delegates to every state where a correctional officer has died in the line of duty as a way to show appreciation for the states that supported our Department during that challenging time.