WAYZATA, Minn. (KMSP) - As family members and police grieve the loss of Wayzata Police Officer William Mathews, one group jumped into action.
“Our goal is that the memory and legends of these officers shall never be forgotten,” said Jeff Beahen, the president of the Minnesota Law Enforcement Memorial Association.
LEMA provides support to the fallen officer's family and department.
“We're almost immediately on scene,” said Beahen. “I personally responded to North Memorial and met with Chief Risvold and the family immediately following the officer's death.”
Since then, Officer Mathews has not been alone as officers have stood by him, protecting his family since he was fatally struck by a vehicle Friday afternoon on Highway 12 in Wayzata.
The group also takes on the task of funeral planning down to every detail.
“We'll take care of things like boxes of Kleenex, portable toilets, water,” he said.
Friday afternoon, they helped plan a police procession following Officer Mathews’ hearse from downtown Minneapolis along 394 to the David Lee Funeral Home in Wayzata. Together, officers stood together to honor their fallen brother.
“Regardless of whether you know an officer or if they're with your department, we all walk this thin blue line together, and the fact that it could be any of us any day or any time, really hits home,” said Beahen.
LEMA is still putting together the details for the funeral service, but expects to have more information in the coming days.