- Associated Press - Wednesday, February 17, 2016

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) - A yearlong public art project in west Omaha will commemorate the city’s fallen police officers.

The project, called Horses of Honor Omaha, will bring seven life-size statues of horses without riders to Turner Park and the Midtown Crossing development, the Omaha World-Herald (http://bit.ly/1Ql6lDd ) reported. An eighth horse is planned for Omaha Police headquarters downtown.

The effort will be unveiled May 20, the first anniversary of officer Kerrie Orozco’s death. Orozco was fatally shot by a fugitive she was trying to arrest on a felony warrant.

“This project is for Kerrie and all of the brave Omaha police officers who have died in the service of our city,” Omaha Mayor Jean Stothert said as he announced the project Tuesday.

Omaha Police Chief Todd Schmaderer said the project would meet his three goals for commemorating Orozco’s death: The public will be involved, the commemoration will last, and other officers will also be honored.

“It is our privilege to help celebrate the legacies of those who bravely served and protected our community,” Schmaderer said.

Other officers honored in the project will have died in the past 10 to 20 years and may have been killed by gunfire or illness. There will also be a life-size replica of an Omaha police dog named Kobus, who was shot and killed during a standoff Jan. 23.

The artwork is inspired by a similar effort in Chicago. The eight identical horses have already been created, but local artists will make each one different before the unveiling.

A free tribute concert and festival will take place at Turner Park on May 21, the day after the horses are revealed. Organizers expect more than 300,000 people to visit the park during the year the project is on display.

The figures will be auctioned off in about a year. Proceeds will go to the Omaha Police Foundation to purchase equipment for officers.

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Information from: Omaha World-Herald, http://www.omaha.com

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