Families of two young police officers killed in a brutal ambush last year have paid tribute to them on National Police Remembrance Day.
Constables Rachel McCrow, 29, and Matthew Arnold, 26, were shot dead when they attended a property at Wieambilla, in rural Queensland, on December 12 last year.
Suspects Nathaniel Train, his brother Gareth and his sister-in-law Stacey, opened fire on the police after they entered the property in what has been described as a “religiously-motivated attack”.
A neighbour, Alan Dare, 58, was also gunned down by the Trains when he went to investigate the commotion.
The Trains were later killed themselves by Queensland tactical police after a long stand-off.
In a joint statement, the families of Rachel and Matthew remembered the “loyal friends, full of laughter” who “impacted the lives of everyone around them”.
“Every day, our families deeply miss their presence, and our love and pride in both Matthew and Rachel will never waver.”
Fellow officers also used this year’s Police Remembrance Day service to reflect on the lives of Matthew and Rachel.
“This years’ service is marked by a heartfelt tribute to Constables Matthew Arnold and Rachel McCrow, and Constable Anthony Woods from Western Australia Police Force – three exemplary officers who tragically lost their lives in the line of duty within the last 12 months,” Queensland Police Deputy Commissioner Shane Chelepy said.
“Together, we commit to honouring the fallen by dedicated ourselves to serving our communities and keeping them safe.
Anthony Woods, 28, was killed when he was run over during an arrest in Perth June this year.
Thousands of mourners attended Constable Woods’ funeral at Optus Stadium in July.
The names of the three fallen officers were added to the National Police Memorial in Canberra on Friday.
The full statement from the Arnold and McCrow families can be read below:
Matthew and Rachel epitomised what it meant to be a police officer.
Bright, brave, thoughtful and kind. Always putting others before themselves.
Outside of work, they were loyal friends, full of laughter, a devoted daughter and dedicated son – they impacted the lives of everyone around them.
Every day, our families deeply miss their presence, and our love and pride in both Matthew and Rachel will never waver.
This National Police Remembrance Day, our families would like to extend our profound gratitude to every person who has shown kindness since December 12, 2022, the evil day our worlds shattered, and lives changed forever.
We want to thank local, state, national and international; people, groups, clubs, services, businesses and organisations for their support.
The messages, cards, flowers, fundraising and many other items and gestures of remembrance, are immensely appreciated.
Our thoughts and heartfelt empathy is also with all police families struggling with the loss of their loved one.
There are no words to express the pain, but we stand with you in remembering them today and every day.
We would also like to express our appreciation for the understanding and compassion shown, as we respectfully request privacy as our families continue to grieve.
May Matthew and Rachel, be remembered for their generous, loving and respected lives and the legacy they leave.
With honour they served.