Slain Lower Burrell Police Officer Honored With Medal

LOWER BURRELL (KDKA) – Officer Derek Kotecki was posthumously awarded a medal of honor Friday night during a ceremony at Burrell High School.

Officer Kotecki was shot and killed as he tried to arrest a fugitive in the Dairy Queen parking lot in Lower Burrell last fall.

His father, Richard, was presented with the medal. He thanked the community for a memorable night honoring his son.

Officer Kotecki was a husband and father.

Retired Lower Burrell Police Chief William Newell talked about interviewing a young Kotecki for a job with the force many years ago.

He also said Officer Kotecki “shall remain our hero.”

East Washington Police Officer John Dryer was also killed in the line of duty last year.

Both officers’ names will be added to a national memorial in Washington, DC next week.

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