Eagle Mountain playground honors sheriff sergeant killed in the line of duty
Jun 30, 2018, 7:20 PM | Updated: Jul 2, 2018, 10:23 am
EAGLE MOUNTAIN, Utah — Any parent will agree kids need something to keep them busy. Especially in the summer.
“Kids love to be outside,” said Shealee Heise while helping her kids onto a playground teeter-totter. “We literally will go sit on our porch.” Heise has lived in Eagle Mountain for nearly five years.
She says there are a few small parks in the area, but nothing like the new park that opened Saturday afternoon near her home. “When they were building it, we would always go by and wonder when it was going to be done,” she said. “We’ve been waiting for this for a long time.”
For kids, like her 5-year old daughter Haven and 2-year old Hadlee, a long time seems like forever. “They were mad they had to wait for the presentation. We’re sitting on the grass and she’s like ‘I wanna go to the park’ and I kept telling her we had to wait,” said Heise with a laugh.
The grand opening included the mayor thanking former and current city council members and parks workers, free hot dogs, and a small daytime fireworks show.
However, as soon as the official thank you’s and handshakes were done, kids ran to the park to start the real work. There are slides, a jungle-gym type climbing piece of equipment, and several other toys for kids to play on. “This is awesome. We’re excited about the splash pad,” said Heise while walking through the park with her daughters.
However, for all the memories families will be making here, the actual name of the park is so residents will never forget. The Cory B. Wride Memorial Park is to honor Utah County Sheriff’s Sgt. Cory Wride.
He was shot and killed in the line of duty along the highway in Eagle Mountain in 2014. “This is a great tribute to Cory because he was all about families,” said Blake Wride, who is Cory’s father.
Wride’s parents, widow, siblings, and children were also at the Grand Opening. Seeing children giggling, running, and playing in the park makes them feel proud.
Even though it’s been four and a half years since Wride was killed, his family says they think about him all the time. “Every day that I go downstairs and I pass his picture, sometimes I’ll stop and rub his cheek,” said his mother, Kathy Wride. “You don’t ever forget.”
That’s what Eagle Mountain city leaders also wanted… to never forget his sacrifice. Heise remembers hearing the news when Wride was killed.
Even though her daughters are too young to understand it all now, this park will be a place they plan on visiting often.
One day, they, and many other children who play here, will know the story about the man it’s named after. “It’s awesome they named it after him,” said Heise.