At 10:00 a.m. on Friday, September 28, 2007, a dedication ceremony will be held at the Polk County Sheriff’s Office Northwest District Command, located at 1045 Wedgewood Estates Blvd. in north Lakeland, honoring Deputy Sheriff Vernon “Matt” Williams and his K-9 partner DiOGi. As has become the tradition at PCSO, when members are tragically killed in the line of duty, one of PCSO’s facilities is often named after those members.
Matt and DiOGi were assigned to the NW District when they were gunned down on September 28, 2006. In fact, when the building was first built, Matt and DiOGi were at the open house ceremony Thursday, October 20, 2005, welcoming agency members, county representatives, and members of the public who came to see this newest addition to the PCSO facilities (see attached photo).
Matt Williams’ family will be there September 28th for the unveiling of the plaque, which is inscribed with the following:
This building is dedicated to the memory of Deputy Sheriff Vernon “Matt” Williams and his loyal K-9 partner DiOGi, September 28, 2007.
Local singer/songwriter Joni Canova will also be on hand to donate several compact discs to the agency containing a song that she wrote that was inspired by Matt. Media representatives are invited to attend this dedication ceremony and to pre-announce the event for the public’s benefit.
Sheriff Grady Judd encourages the public’s participation in this important event, saying, “Matt and DiOGi gave their lives for the citizens of Polk County, and it’s the least we can do to honor their memory by having the building that they reported to each week named after them. Please join us as we celebrate their hard work and dedication to keeping us all safe.”