CLINTON, Mo. — It’s been one year since Officer Christopher Ryan Morton died in the line of duty. But his selfless nature lives on through family members’ donations.
“It is still just really, really difficult for all of us, every single one of us,” Capt. Paul Abbott said.
Clinton law enforcement are taking that pain and using it to train officers so they don’t see situations like this again.
“It’s still something that we think about every single day.” Abbott said. “And it’s something that we want to prepare for every single day.”
Morton was shot and killed in the line of duty March 6, 2018. After Morton died his aunt and uncle donated a large sum of money to the department hoping it would go to something in their nephews honor.
Abbott said last week that came true when a shipment of Glock 17T training weapons arrived.
“This gives us an opportunity to actually be in an environment that those guys faced that night without being in real danger,” Abbott said.
“So, every time we put these in our holsters and train we get to think that Ryan is behind us, pushing us, telling us to do better, be strong, I’m with you guys still,” Abbott said.
These weapons provide force on force’ training, according to Abbott.
“Which is being able to be in a 360 degree environment with a target that is basically another human being and is moving and doing things that you wouldn’t be able to due on a regular gun range.”
After receiving what they needed, the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge # 34 payed it forward to a local school’s milk fund. Officers presented Henry Elementary with a check for $319.
“That was Ryan’s badge number, that was his call number,” Abbott explained.
Without knowing it, Clinton Police started a trend. Six businesses poured out $319 and more than 25 individuals donated, as well.
“In the last week we have had over $2,000 donated to our free milk fund and it helps over 90 students right now get an afternoon milk just like all the other students in their classrooms, Clinton Schools Director of Communications Angie Lawson said.
Lawson said that’s enough money to fund the program into next year
Abbott said the donation speaks to the selfless person Morton was and the man they’ll always miss.