LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Protect and Serve.
When we hear the phrase, we think of the men and women on the front lines of police work in Louisville. They rush to crime scenes and chase the bad guys. One group within the Louisville Metro Police Department is responsible for another kind of service to the community — the Vehicle Impound Unit.
When they lost one of their own recently, Larry Kizer, an LMPD officer knew he had to do something in his honor.
“We all knew him as a funny guy, great guy to be around,” said Major David Allen, who works in LMPD’s administrative services.
“He was a fun guy to work with,” Allen Ryan, civilian manager of the tow lot began. “There wasn’t nothing I couldn’t ask Larry to go get as far as vehicles, abandoned vehicles. Larry would take care of it.”
“He always had a smile on his face,” said Officer Michael Rach. “He always helped me out. I know he’s changed my tire and towed several of my vehicles. He and I always had a good laugh on the scene, so I just wanted to do something for a good friend of mine.”
Officer Michael Rach did just that. Something good for a friend.
Losing a friend is never easy. Larry Kizer’s death on New Year’s Eve while on the job has been hard for his VIU. In his honor, his friend, Officer Rach made a barrel head to be hung on the inside of the building on the tow lot, memorializing his service, dedication, and sacrifice to the city of Louisville.
There was no flashy theatrics as Officer Rach passed the barrel head-on, but the gratitude from Kizer’s former co-workers and the impact he had on the group was palpable.
“Can’t wait to get it hung up in the unit to show that there’s a remembrance here of Larry,” Ryan said as he held the barrel head. “It’s special.”
“We’re all one family here,” Officer Rach said. “It’s not just our department. It’s all the departments.”