A Marine Corps reservist and Los Angeles Police Department officer killed in 2010 by a makeshift roadside bomb in Afghanistan was memorialized in Winnetka Thursday with an intersection named in his honor.
City Councilman Bob Blumenfield, LAPD Chief Charlie Beck, Deputy Chief John Sherman and officials from the U.S. Marine Corps took part in the dedication ceremony, which designated the intersection of Quakertown Avenue and Gault Street in Winnetka as “Joshua Cullins Way.”
Cullins, who was from Simi Valley, served in the Marine Corps for a decade, rising to the rank of staff sergeant, then joined the LAPD after becoming a reservist. He was killed in action by an improvised explosive device on Oct. 19, 2010, in Afghanistan’s Helmand province during Operation Enduring Freedom. A member of an ordnance disposal company in the Camp Pendleton-based I Marine Expeditionary Force, the 28-year-old Cullins was on his second tour of duty in Afghanistan.
He had two days left in the field as an explosive disposal technician when he was killed while investigating a roadside bomb near Marja. A secondary explosion was set off as he investigated an earlier blast. Cullins, who was expected to be home for Christmas, planned to join the LAPD bomb squad when he returned.
Blumenfield’s office said Cullins was an active member of the Winnetka community with strong ties to St. Martin’s School, which both his younger brothers attended. The intersection to be named after Cullins is adjacent to the school and was chosen because he regularly joined students in the classroom to talk about his service and the importance of giving back to the community, Blumenfield’s office said.
The ceremony featured the presentation of the colors by a USMC Honor Guard, music from the LAPD Emerald Society, a performance of the national anthem by LAPD Officer Rosaline Curry, and a flyover by the Condor Squadron, a nonprofit organization that was founded in 1965 by World War II fighter pilots and flies prop-driven World War II AT-6 training planes at parades, memorial services and other commemorative events. A special sign was also unveiled and a dedication certificate was presented to Cullins’ mother.
Memorial services were held for Cullins on Nov. 3, 2010, at the Roman Catholic Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels in Downtown Los Angeles.