FAYETTEVILLE, Ark — Today everyone in our community honored fallen Fayetteville Police Officer Stephen Carr.
Fayetteville Mayor Lionel Jordan proclaimed April 13 Officer Stephen Carr 413 Day.
Officer Carr was shot and killed in the line of duty in early December 2019 and 413 was the late officer's badge number.
His long-time girlfriend Madi Rader is speaking out for the first time since the tragedy.
To honor the man who gave everything to his community, the city wants to give something back by lighting up the town blue in his honor.
“Today is just a really good day to remember Stephen," Madi said. "There are a hundred days out of the year that are going to be special for me but why today is so special is because today is a day for our entire to remember him.”
Officer Carr was taken far too soon at the age of 27 on December 7, 2019. He was a son, a big brother, a friend to so many and a beloved boyfriend to Madi.
“He was just, he was my best friend,” Madi said. “The outpour of support from every square inch has been just wonderfully overwhelming. And I think it’s really special we all get to celebrate this today together.”
Buildings and homes across Northwest Arkansas shine blue tonight to pay their respects.
Some also honored the fallen hero by participating in work out challenges that include the numbers four, one and three.
“I kind of ran my four-point one three miles," Madi said. "I went and picked up a ribeye steak that I’m going to grill tonight and going to have a shiner for him tonight.”
Madi visited the Fayetteville Police Department today, somewhere she says will always feel like home.
“I don’t come up here often but it’s definitely a comfortable place for me to be,” she said.
Madi says there is not a day that goes by where she doesn't think about Stephen, but she does her best to put a smile on, work hard and make him proud.
“I’m just trying to live my life and enjoy it because Stephen was always happy...and he always wanted others to be happy,” she said.
Every year, April 13 will be a day to remember her beloved boyfriend. Madi says she will carry on his memories so that Officer Stephen Carr will never be forgotten.
"You know it's harder without him here, but I know he's with me I know he's telling me to stop crying, get it together, put a smile on, go do this," Madi said.
The Fayetteville Police Department says you can share photos of the ways you are honoring Officer Carr on social media with the hashtag #remember413.