LEBANON, Maine - The town's memorial to former Lebanon Police Officer Jeffery Lee Bull has been completely redone thanks to an effort organized by a former town selectman and his wife.
Jason Cole, also a former assistant rescue chief for the town and his wife, Laura, spearheaded the effort to spruce up the memorial honoring former Lebanon Police Officer Jeffery Bull, who was killed in a vehicle collision while assisting another agency that was involved in a vehicle pursuit on Route 202 on May 9, 1987.
The chase had gone throughout several communities in York County before speeding into Lebanon on Route 202.
Bull attempted a rolling roadblock to stop the suspects, but the suspect vehicle struck his patrol car, causing it to overturn. Two minors in the suspect vehicle survived the crash, but Bull did not.
The suspects were sent to a juvenile facility until their 21st birthdays.
Bull was a widower trying to raise his two young girls by himself plus giving his time and heart to his community through many avenues of volunteerism, Laura Cole wrote in a press release. Only a few hours prior to losing Jeff, he also lost his grandmother, Nettie Rose Bull. Besides his two young daughters, he left behind many family members who adored Jeff.
In 2012, the town came together to remember Bull and his sacrifice to the community. About 1,000 people attended the community day celebration that had a rededication of the sign in his honor.
Family from all over the United States came to honor one of Lebanon's finest. The celebration was organized by Jason Cole, who has honored Jeff's memory every year by placing flowers on the anniversary of his passing and also for National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial week.
It was also determined after talking with the family that the sign had his name misspelled. In May the Coles approached the Lebanon Board of Selectmen to have the sign fixed to help his family, which selectmen agreed to.
The Coles reached out to an area sign company to get prices to fix a spelling error. They reached out to Dasco Signs of Acton, Maine who agreed to check it out. They came right down and while looking at the sign, determined due to its age, the sign had deteriorated beyond safely fixing. Dasco signs offered to completely redo the sign, at no cost, and donate the sign and put it back up.
The new sign was delivered and installed on Wednesday.
Laura said they then reached out to Lebanon's local greenhouse, Farmfield Greenhouse, to see if they could help with some new flowers. They made a generous donation of some beautiful flowers and bushes.
"This truly was a community effort and we are proud that for another 25 years, the sign will be a beautiful remembrance for Officer Jeff Bull who gave his life for his community. Jeff was not only a police officer, but he was a volunteer firefighter, a small business owner and a mentor and friend to many," said Laura Cole, a former Lebanon Rescue Squad member and owner of Go FOTO Yourself New England, which backed the sign effort. "We are so thankful to Dasco Signs, Farmfield Greenhouse and everyone who made this possible with us."
To read a story from the former Lebanon Voice digital daily about the 2012 dedication click here.