Family, Friends & Fellow Officers Remember...

Deputy Sheriff Joshua Thomas Rutherford

Blaine County Sheriff's Office, Montana

End of Watch Thursday, May 29, 2003

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Reflections for Deputy Sheriff Joshua Thomas Rutherford

Hey lil' brother I miss and
love you....
love your
sis jody

July 6, 2005


Another class from the academy graduated on Friday, July 1st. My husband Mike was there, because one of his officers graduated. He said it was a good ceremony, especially when they gave the Joshua T. Rutherford Defensive Tactics Award. Mike told me that an officer from Great Falls received it. I am so proud and honored that so many people at the academy thought so highly of you. There is not a day that goes by that I think of you. I miss you more and more instead of less and less. Go with God my nephew.

Melody Zuhoski

July 2, 2005

I miss you

June 24, 2005

At the beginning of every shift I supervise, myself and the other officers on shift dedicate the day to the memory of a fallen officer.

Today, May 29, 2005 we dedicated the shift to the memory of Deputy Sheriff Joshua Thomas Rutherford who died in the line of duty on this date two years ago.

When one law enforcement officer falls, we all stumble for a while, but we will carry on.

Deputy Rutherford's sacrifice will never be forgotten.

Sgt. Paul Bissonnette
Royal Canadian Mounted Police - Surrey, BC

May 29, 2005

Hey buddy it has been a while since I wrote a reflection. I visit your site alot and still miss our talks. It is so AWESOME when I read reflections from fellow L.E. Officers that you and I had instructed together at MLEA. They respected you and what you stood for as I do. I am trying to get some of the D.T. instructors that you and I taught with to get together this coming week as it has been 2 years since that night that you were taken away from us. It seems as if it was yesterday when I received the phone call at MLEA telling me that you had been killed. You were to be in Helena the following week to help teach D.T.s. I used to look forward to the fun that we would have teaching together and still miss the talks we had on the phone trying to set it up so we all could be there in Helena together. I hope Brien Galt, Travis Bruyer and Howard Webb can all get to Malta so we can visit about you and remember the good times that we all had together. We all want to go to your grave site to visit with you and have our own memorial to you. I know you are watching over us and I still miss you my friend, be with GOD.

Deputy Alan L. Guderjahn
Phillips County Sheriff's Office

May 23, 2005


The law enforcement memorial in Helena, was very nice. They had it at the capital, and there was a really good turnout. My husband Mike did stand guard at the memorial 3 times. I took him there for the first one at 7 in the morning, and I though I was doing pretty good, until I saw your name on the marble. It still is very hard for me to comprehend all of this, even after all this time. I miss you very much. Just know that you will never be forgotten. You impacted a lot of people's lives and will live on in our hearts forever.

Melody Zuhoski

May 17, 2005

To the officers who left reflections,

Thank you for the kinds words and postings. Its nice to know that Josh made a difference in the law enforcement comunity. Yes he was a special person, thank you

Maxine, mother
Deputy Joshua Rutherford eow 5/29/03

May 9, 2005

I have really been thinking of you a lot lately. Maybe because of the Law Enforcement Memorial coming up. My husband Mike will stand guard for 1 hour there, as well as many other officers. I think that this year will be a little easier than last year, when you were inducted. I hope so. I look forward to October when I hope and pray this ordeal in losing you will finally be put to rest, when that man that took you from us will be put to death. I love you and miss your smiling face.

Melody Zuhoski
Josh's aunt

May 5, 2005


i was reading all the reflections on here, and i am just amazed on how you impacted so many peoples lives. I still can't believe that you have been gone this long! it seems like, just yesterday that i seen you driving your patrol car around Harlem. This is a Poem for you, and i hope People realize what Police officers do for us, so here it goes ok? I love You Josh, always and forever and i will never forget you!

On the day they had to fall,
they gave their all.
Wearing brown or blue,
they were protecting and serving you.

It started as just a simple call
and ended in tragedy.
"Officer down," the radio announced.
At the scene the brave man pronounced dead,
The killers had fled.
Another widow cries,
yet no one tries
to stop the killing
of these men and women willing
to risk their lives everyday for you.

Always remember the law enforcement
that gave their all,
on the day they had to fall.

May 5, 2005

I love you baby!!!!!

April 26, 2005


Emory - Ephrata, WA
brother of Ferry County WA Undersheriff, Matthew J. Lane, EOW 5/30/03

April 24, 2005

To Josh's family-

Josh taught defensive tactics to my MLEA Basic class (#118) about two months before his passing. I never really knew him too well, but news of his death hit me and the other members of my class very hard. He struck us all as being a warm and kind human being and impressed us with his professionalism. I'm glad I stumbled upon this website, because I'd like you all to know that Josh's passing impacted a LOT of people and he's in the thoughts of people he hardly knew.

I think of Josh whenever I do a traffic stop at 0300 and know my closest backup is 50 miles away.

I think of Josh whenever I get the chance to hug my kids when I go off-duty.

I think of Josh before I respond to every domestic.

I think of Josh whenever it's 95 degrees out and I'm complaining about how hot my body armor is. All of a sudden, it's not so uncomfortable anymore.

Josh taught us a lot of things at the Academy, but his passing taught us even more. It taught us to not take the little things for granted and to remember why we chose this line of work to begin with.

I can't imagine the pain you feel, but perhaps you can take some comfort in the knowledge that perhaps other officers' lives may be saved by the lessons learned from his passing. He was an excellent deputy and an even better person. Be proud.

God bless.

Deputy Patrick O'Connor
Sanders Co. Sheriff's Office

April 12, 2005

Baby Boy,

Your killers writ was turned down by the Montana Supreme Court. He will be sentenced on April 29. If we could just get you back when he goes to jail.
I miss you so much.


April 8, 2005

I remember teaching you the first responder course at the Montana Law Enforcement Academy. You stuck out due to your professionalism, humor, and you gave 100% on every task. Your passing did not go with out every officer learning something from you. It has reminded me that no matter how many boring shifts you may have, danger is still just around the corner. You have to be ready at all times, no matter what "routine" calls you go on. I think of you every time I work a shift, and your family is in my thoughts! You are not forgotten!!

John Carlbom Reserve Deputy
Chouteau County Sheriff

March 27, 2005

I just returned from a Street Survival course in Bozeman. I wanted to thank you for your sacrifice for us. We are all warriors and may you never be forgotten.

Deputy Joe Fouhy
Daniels County Sheriff

March 18, 2005


I will be traveling home on April 15 for Grandma Teresa birthday and then I will wait for the sentencing. I wasn't going to go but changed my mind because I want Jackson to know that I will be at every court action even if he gets an appeal. Just like in life you knew that I would always be there for you, Death does not change that. I won't be able to stay home until memorial day. But I will be there when Jackson recieves his deserved death penalty.

I miss you more today then yesterday
Love, Mom

March 17, 2005

It has been awhile since I have been to this page. Its to hard sometimes to deal with everything and the fallacies. I know you know the truth and I hold that in my heart for comfort. You have touched my life and nobdoy can ever take that away from me. I know what we shared Joshua and I treasure every moment of it. I still feel your presence and your love. Thank you

March 15, 2005


I miss you so much. I thought it would get easier as time went on. I miss you more now than when you first left. I think it's because reality has set in and I know that I will never be able to touch you again.

March 13, 2005

I need your wisdom and guidance these next couple weeks, please watch over me and keep me safe. I love you

March 10, 2005

josh, you have been on my mind a lot this past month. i am anxiously awaiting the sentencing of the coward that killed you. sometimes i feel bad for wanting to be there right in the front row when they tell him he will be sentenced to death, but you know what, i believe in an eye for an eye. he took you from us josh, and he should not be allowed to ever again walk on this earth. i know that one day he will meet his maker and then his real punishment will begin. until then, i want him and his family to suffer the way yours has. i love you, and think of your smiling face everyday.

melody zuhoski

March 8, 2005

I have been thinking about you a lot lately. I miss you so much. I dreamed about you a few weeks ago and it made me want to take you right out of my dreams and hug you. To see you was such a gift, if I cannot see you in my waking hours, why not in my dreams? You looked really happy, and it made me feel good, because I pray every day that you are happy wherever you may be. Some days I get depressed knowing that I cannot come home to you and have you hold me and make me feel safe again. Or to hear your soothing voice, telling me that we can make it through the tough times together and that I was not alone. I pray that you watch over me and continue to help me through the tough times in my life.

Not too long ago, I was asked to give my hand in marrige to a man that will never be what you were to me. The hurt of losing you is still too deep,I cannot begin to imagine a life time with someone else. You are the one I wanted to spend my life with. Now I know, the Creator had other plans for us. One day I hope to heal and find a good man to share my life with.

I love you with all my heart.

February 25, 2005

My mom and I think about you all the time. I always remember the crazy moments we had together. I really miss you a lot! You are the most best uncle anyone can ever have! Love you

Love your girl,
Raelynn Maxine Rider

Raelynn Maxine Rider
Harlem MT

February 13, 2005

You taught me so much. Your friendship, love, and laughter are things I will always cherish and hold dear to my heart. I know you are always with me for comfort and guidance. Thanks for everything, you will always fill a very special place in my heart. I love you.

February 6, 2005

Thanks for everything you do for us. We all miss you driving around in Harlem. You are a warrior. Peace be with you my brother

February 2, 2005

I miss you dady I hope you protect me

son Teague


January 24, 2005

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