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Flags at half-staff Fri & Sat to honor Az officer dead from COVID & former Sen. Harry Reid

Flags will be flown at half-staff on Friday and Saturday to mark the death of a Casa Grande police officer from COVID-19, and for the funeral of former U.S. Senator Harry Reid.

Reid's funeral will be Saturday, and both President Joe Biden and Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey have ordered flags be lowered in his honor.

Ducey also ordered flags be flown at half-staff across the state on Friday, in honor of Casa Grande Police Officer Jesus D. Lara, who died Tuesday from COVID-19.

Lara, who is survived by his wife and three children, was six-year veteran of the Casa Grande Police Department and had worked for two years for the Gila River Police Department, Ducey's office said.

Flags in Arizona may remain lowered from sunrise on Friday, Jan. 7, to sunset on Saturday, Jan. 8, Ducey's office said, because of the two days of observances. Flags will also be lowered for the interment of Officer Lara on Jan. 21, 2022.

The Saturday half-staff observance applies across the country, including to all federal buildings and installations, as well as within Arizona.

Biden issued a proclamation honoring the late senator from Nevada, praising Reid's long career in public service and ordering the flag-lowering as a mark of respect for his memory.

Reid died Dec. 28, 2021, after battling pancreatic cancer since retiring from the Senate, in which he served from 1986 to 2017.

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Reid, a former boxer, was leader of Senate Democrats under the terms of President George W. Bush and President Barack Obama. Securing Senate passage of the Affordable Care Act during the Obama administration was considered one of Reid's signature accomplishments.

Democrat Chuck Schumer, Reid's successor in the Senate, said, "Harry Reid was one of the most amazing individuals I've ever met. He never forgot where he came from and used those boxing instincts to fearlessly fight those who were hurting the poor and the middle class."

The lowering of the flag to honor Reid will take place the same day as the 11th anniversary of the Jan. 8, 2011 assassination attempt on U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords at a Congress On Your Corner event at North Oracle and West Ina roads in which six people were killed and 13 wounded.

There will be a commemoration ceremony Saturday, Jan. 8, with a bell-ringing and remembrance ceremony adjacent to the Downtown site of a permanent memorial dedicated to the victims of the attack.

Survivors, relatives of those who were killed as well as board members of Tucson’s Jan. 8th Memorial Foundation will attend the event, which will begin about 9:30 a.m. Beginning at 10:10 a.m. – the moment the 2011 attack began – a bell will be rung for each of those who were killed and those who were shot and survived.

The anniversary observance will be in the courtyard of the Historic Pima County Courthouse, 115 N. Church Ave., next to the memorial. Access to the event will be from North Church Avenue on the east side of the courthouse.

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Senate Democrats

Among Reid's signature accomplishments was securing Senate passage of the Affordable Care Act.