Alaskan patrol boat named for fallen officer from Forks [Corrected]
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CORDOVA, Alaska — One of the newest U.S. Forest Service patrol boats in Alaska honors a U.S. Forest Service law enforcement officer from Forks whose 2008 murder near Sequim sent shock waves across the region.
U.S. Forest Service officials recently christened the PV Kristine Fairbanks, named for the officer killed in the line of duty four years ago.
Fairbanks, a 22-year veteran of the Forest Service and a wife and mother, was fatally shot Sept. 20, 2008, during a traffic stop near the Dungeness Forks campground in Olympic National Park, roughly a half-dozen miles south of Sequim. She was 51.
Clallam County Sheriff's deputies shot and killed Fairbanks' presumed killer, Shawn Roe, 36, outside the Longhouse Market and Deli in Blyn later that night.
The vessel, based in Cordova, Alaska, patrols the waters of Prince William Sound and serve both in law enforcement and Forest Service capacities, said Chris Lampshire, Alaska Region 10 North Zone patrol captain.
Alaska Region 10 Law Enforcement officials contracted with Bay Weld Boats, based in Homer, Alaska, in 2011 to build the new boat, which was put into service in April.
Law enforcement officials decided to name the vessel after Fairbanks after consulting with her widower, Brian Fairbanks of Forks, a field officer with the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife.
He and the couple's daughter, Whitney, visited Cordova and met Morris and Wessel before the boat entered service, Lampshire said.
Brian Fairbanks could not be reached for comment last week.
Law enforcement officers Andy Morse and Jim Wessel will man the new patrol vessel, and Lampshire said he encouraged the two to name the boat themselves.
Morse and Wessel decided to honor Fairbanks by naming the boat after her because of the law enforcement work she had done in both Washington state and Alaska.
“I commend those two for coming up with the name and having the forethought to dedicate that to her,” Lampshire said.
The patrol vessel can carry heavy loads of passengers and gear and sleep up to four people, Lampshire said.
Officers will use the boat to patrol more than 3,500 miles of shoreline along Chugach National Forest in Prince William Sound.
Lampshire was serving as a Forest Service law enforcement officer in Montana when Fairbanks was killed, but said he had the privilege and the opportunity to receive K-9 training from her while in Montana.
Fairbanks trained officers and their K-9 partners in multiple states, including Alaska, and was known for her close connection with her dogs, including her last: Radar.
More than 3,000 people gathered at Civic Field in Port Angeles to mourn her during a memorial service.
Authorities found that in addition to killing Fairbanks and adding her gun to his small arsenal, Roe — whose last known address was in Everett — also killed that day a Sequim retiree, 59-year-old Robert Ziegler, and stole his truck.
Last modified: August 06. 2012 9:53AM