Tecumseh Community Holds Candlelight Vigil For Fallen Officer
TECUMSEH, Oklahoma - Hundreds gathered Thursday night in Tecumseh to honor fallen officer, Justin Terney, who was shot and killed during a traffic stop. The town held a candlelight vigil ahead of Terney's funeral.
It was candles and chocolate milk in memory of Terney; his favorite drink. The big idea at the vigil was family; the bonds of brotherhood that were made both on and off the force.
An evening for remembrance. The town of Tecumseh lined with flags, red, white, black and blue, honoring the life of 22-year-old Justin Terney.
Terney's community listened to speakers as his department mourned their loss.
“[I’ve] been an officer here about 21 years and this is the first time in my history to ever have to bury one of my brothers,” said Tecumseh Assistant Police Chief JR Kidney.
Brotherhood and family, the two words spoken most often Thursday night about the men and women in blue. Law enforcement from around the state and around the nation attended to pay their respects, like former Deputy Richard Daniel from Riverside, California.
“You lose one of your brothers. A band of brothers. We're truly a band of brothers,” said Daniel. “You have to come back to work and you sit in that chair, roll call and that chair's empty. It's something you'll never get over.”
Moments of silence were held and solemn prayers were said as Terney's brothers and sisters of all kinds waited to say their last goodbyes.
“You can talk to everyone in the world that’s been there and done that, but whenever it’s your own brother or partner or person you worked the streets with, and you gotta go and say your final goodbyes, you can’t prepare yourself for that,” said Kidney.
Terney's funeral is Friday. Kidney says they expect as many as 3,000 people to attend.