The Illinois Correctional Employees' Memorial Association was incorporated on October 26, 1999 in Springfield, Illinois for the following purpose:
To recognize and memorialize those correctional employees who have been killed while performing their duties
To establish, maintain and construct a suitable monument to record the names of our fallen heroes for posterity
And, to create, in the names of those who have been killed in the line of duty, a living memorial in the form of scholarships and awards for the members of the Illinois Correctional Employees' Memorial Association
The employees of the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC) and the Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ) made this happen. On May 10, 2001, the groundbreaking for the memorial began. One year later, on May 9, 2002, the dedication of the Memorial Wall, along with the Correctional Officer of the Year ceremony, was held at the Department of Corrections headquarters in Springfield, Illinois. The names of the Department’s fallen heroes are inscribed on granite blocks featured on both sides of the memorial wall.