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Crowds line up to hug police officers in Dallas

DALLAS - Police Chief David Brown received a long and loud round of a applause before he spoke at a midday, citywide prayer service here. Police work is a job where you seldom hear the words “Thank you,” he said.

The hundreds of residents who packed Thanks-Giving Square Park in downtown Dallas responded with a resounding, "THANK YOU!"

After the service, which featured remarks from faith and civic leaders, musical tributes and prayers, many of those in attendance stood in line to offer their personal thanks to men and women in uniform. Soon, everyone started hugging.

"It's overwhelming," said Senior Cpl. Monica Cordova. "We were overwhelmed with grief. Now we're overwhelmed with gratitude."

Snipers in Dallas Thursday shot 12 police officers and two civilians, killing five, as a protest over the deaths of two black men killed by police officers in recent days was ending.

Shots rang out around 9 p.m., as the snipers fired on officers from two locations, according to authorities there.

MORE: Police chief says Dallas shootings were "well planned"

Grieving Dallas pulls together after sniper attacks

A timeline of the attacks in Dallas

What we know about the shooting suspect who was killed during the attacks

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott calls on his state to come together

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Jennifer Brett is a multiplatform journalist and digital coach. She writes The Buzz blog for