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Oct 2010
Going above and beyond, and making the ultimate sacrifice for his country

The 3rd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment was scheduled to complete its mission in the field of Afghanistan’s war-torn Helmand Province yesterday. Tragically, Staff Sergeant and LAPD Officer Joshua J. Cullins was not with his fellow Marines when troops arrived to relieve them. He died on Tuesday – only two days earlier - from a roadside bomb as his unit was investigating an explosion.

Joshua didn’t have to be there. Rather than return to Los Angeles to rejoin the Department ranks and leave his Marine unit behind, he volunteered for a second tour of duty in Afghanistan. He chose to risk his life - the ultimate sacrifice - to be part of a mission he truly believed in. He wanted to make a difference, and to those who knew him he did. In our book, this redefines the phrase “above and beyond the call of duty.”

In July, Joshua was injured by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan. He made a remarkable recovery and wanted nothing more than to get back to work. That was just the kind of guy he was. Knowing all he’d been through and how he’d worked so hard to recover quickly, it was crushing to learn of his death. We’ve all began a grieving process that will not soon end.

LAPD Officer Joshua J. Cullins

Joshua was the second member of the LAPD to die fighting for his country in the Iraq/Afghanistan conflict. Less than seven months ago, we lost Robert J. Cottle, an LAPD SWAT officer and sergeant major with a United States Marine Corps Reserve battalion. Clearly a common thread in the character among our United States military, R.J. too had volunteered for the deployment that ultimately took his life.

Joshua joined the LAPD in 2008 and had a most promising law enforcement career ahead of him. His positive impact on the Department during his short time with us speaks to the character of this great Angelino and great American.

We invite you to share your personal experiences and memories of Joshua as we do our best to honor him as a fellow officer, friend and hero. Leave a comment here, or if you have a longer story and/or photos to share, send them to [email protected]. If possible, please provide the date that the photo was taken, its location and name everyone in the shot.

We will always remember Joshua J. Cullins. To honor him, R.J. and all of the other men and women who have been killed while serving our Country, we must never forget that the sacrifices they made were for us.



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