Fla. rivals Osceola, St. Cloud to honor fallen police officers before Friday night's game

Fla. rivals Osceola, St. Cloud to honor fallen police officers before Friday night's game

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Fla. rivals Osceola, St. Cloud to honor fallen police officers before Friday night's game

A rivalry game in Florida will have extra special meaning Friday night.

Prior to the contest between St. Cloud (Fla.) and host Osceola (Kissimmee, Fla.), the Orlando Sentinel reports, a pregame ceremony will be held in honor of two Kissimmee Police Department officers who died in the line of duty two weeks ago.

One of the deceased was Sergeant Richard “Sam” Howard, a 2000 Osceola graduate and former football player. Howard was assisting officer Matthew Baxter when both were ambushed and shot, per the Sentinel.

Howard’s daughter is member of the St. Cloud girls flag football team.

Osceola players wore helmet decals with the initials “SH” in honor of Howard last week during a 23-14 win at Lake Gibson (Lakeland, Fla.).

The St. Cloud-Osceola rivalry dates back to 1925 and has been played each year since 1945. Per the Sentinel, Osceola has won 11 in a row dating back to 2006.

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