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Torrance deputies help decorate home of fallen deputy

December 1, 2011 12:00:00 AM PST
Emma Powell has some very special friends. They all are Los Angeles County Sheriff's deputies who come to her house every year to decorate for Christmas.

She lost her husband, Deputy David Powell, on November 30, 2002. He was shot and killed by a man resisting arrest.

"It's been nine years and they still call me and say, 'What's a day is good for us to come out to put up your Christmas lights?' and 'What's on our honey-do list, we'll do whatever you say,'" Powell said.

The deputies have remodeled her garage, attic, and even the entire house. This year they will put in a bathroom for Powell, the mother of four daughters.

It was two days after Thanksgiving and Emma Powell packed her husband a lunch of leftover turkey sandwiches. He rarely ate a bag lunch.

"I put 'I love you' real big and 'Have a great day,' and he wrote on the top 'I love you too honey,' and that's the last time I heard from him," Powell explained.

What keeps them coming back every year? The deputies have all been at the Lakewood station where David Powell worked. It was Lieutenant Cindy Conner's idea to start the decorating.

"Everybody was just out searching for something to do. Not only did we feel like we were doing it for Dave, for Dave's family, but it gave us a sense of purpose as well," Conner said.

They bring the tree and decorate it. Emma Powell says she's not certain she would be able to do any of this after Dave was killed.

"You know in the beginning people would say 'It will get old. They won't be back.' But not these guys. These guys are always, always there," she said.

This is the time of the year that families everywhere put up lights and decorations, but at the Powell home, family takes on a very special meaning.

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