SHALIMAR — Okaloosa County officials anticipate state lawmakers soon will approve designating a local bridge and a portion of a local highway in honor of four sheriff's deputies killed in the line of duty.

The County Commission recently approved a resolution to ask state legislators to designate the Shalimar Bridge on Eglin Parkway as the "Deputies Tony Forgione and Bill Myers Memorial Bridge," and the portion of U.S. Highway 90 East from the Shoal River Bridge to the Okaloosa/Walton County line as "Deputies Skip York and Burt Lopez Memorial Highway."

The resolution states that:

• On July 22, 2008, Deputy Anthony E. "Tony" Forgione, a three-year veteran, was shot and killed while attempting to arrest a patient who escaped from a secure mental health facility and posed a threat to the community.

• On April 25, 2009, Deputy Burton "Burt" Lopez, a six-year veteran, and Deputy Warren K. "Skip" York, a two-year veteran, were shot and killed while attempting to serve an arrest warrant on an armed-suspect on the charge of domestic violence.

• On Sept. 22, 2015, Deputy William J. "Bill" Myers, a 26-year veteran, was shot and killed while serving a domestic violence injunction.

The resolution was offered by Commission Chairman Graham Fountain, who is a former state and local law enforcement executive. He represents District 1, which covers most of the eastern half of the county and includes much of the county seat of Crestview.

The bridge and highway memorials are among 28 designations in a bill that is expected to be approved by the legislators before their regular session ends on March 9.

Gov. Rick Scott would then be asked to sign the bill into law, with an effective date of July 1. Markers for the fallen deputies would be erected by the Florida Department of Transportation.

At the commission’s Feb. 20 meeting, Fountain introduced a heartfelt song, titled "I Remember," that he co-wrote to honor law officers in Florida who died in the line of duty and their loved ones who were left behind.

Fountain said he was asked to write the song many years ago by Gary Perkins, who at the time served as executive director of the Florida Sheriffs Association.

Perkins, who made the request not long after the deaths of Forgione, Lopez and York, died of cancer before he was able to hear the song, Fountain said.

Fountain wrote the song with his friend and business partner, Warren Halstrom. Halstrom sang the lead vocals and Fountain provides some backup vocals.

"I spent about nine months writing these lyrics," Fountain said. "And I rewrote it probably 50 times to get the right words there that captured what these families go through, in the beginning, through the middle and long in the end as they live without their fallen brothers and sisters."

The song’s lyrics include:

"The flashing lights are now a distant memory

The calls and letters few and far between

I wish that I could tell you how I’m feeling

How the sunset looks tonight from our porch swing."

They also include:

"Bravery and service were your virtues

You earned a crown of glory on that day

You gave your life, you gave your all

You laid your life down when you answered the call."

Commissioner Carolyn Ketchel, whose district includes the Shalimar Bridge, said the song says it all.

"It was very moving," she said. "We have not forgotten as a community the sacrifices of those men who laid down their lives.

"I am very pleased to adopt this resolution for these fallen heroes. Their lives exemplified the virtues of bravery and service, and I particularly want to recognize family members and thank you for the sacrifice that you’ve made."

Lopez’s wife, Michelle, who was joined by York’s wife, Janel, thanked the commission for the resolution.

"This means quite a big deal to us," Michelle said. "When Janel and I spoke when we found out about this last week, our hearts were filled with joy — to honor our spouses for the sacrifices they made and for, as you said, people get to see this (memorial) every day of their lives and be reminded, especially in today’s time as we look at mental health issues and domestic violence, to keep it in the forefront, that it hits so much of our community in so many ways."

Fountain thanked the members of the county’s state legislative delegation for supporting the requested dedications. He specifically recognized state Rep. Jayer Williamson, R-Milton, for his efforts to obtain recognition of the four fallen deputies by amending some of the language of a highway dedication bill named after the late state Sen. Greg Evers.

Evers died last August in a traffic accident in Baker. He served in the state House from 2000-10 and then served in the Senate until 2016.

The bill calls for the portion of State Road 4 between Munson Highway and State Road 189 in Santa Rosa and Okaloosa counties to be designated as "Senator Greg Evers Memorial Highway."

The bill also includes other proposed designations:

• The portion of U.S. 90 between State Road 285 and North State Road 83 in Walton County would be designated "Lieutenant Ewart T. Sconiers Highway" to honor the DeFuniak Springs native who died as a prisoner of war in World War II.

• The portion of Valparaiso Parkway between State Road 85 and John Sims Parkway would be designated as "John B. Arnold Jr. Memorial Highway" in honor of Valparaiso’s late, 53-year mayor who died last February.

• The portion of SR 85 between College Boulevard and Colonel Greg Malloy Road in Okaloosa County would be designated as "SFC William Kelly Lacey Memorial Highway" in honor of the soldier who was killed in January 2014 while serving in Afghanistan.