ROSEVILLE, Calif. (KTXL)-- Thousands of officers from near and far turned out to pay their respect to Deputy Brian Ishmael.
Ishmael was shot and killed while responding to a service call on Oct. 23.
“You know at any time your life can be taken, and we just want to wish the family and the friends and the department their very best,” King County Sheriff’s Deputy Justin Davis said.
Davis traveled with a delegation over 200 miles from Hanford to Roseville in a show of solidarity with the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office. It’s not his first law enforcement funeral but said saying goodbye, even to an officer he didn’t know, is not easy. Still, Davis said showing up is important.
“They’re always humbling and it is a great honor to be able to represent our county and support the family and the agency that had this tragic loss,” he said.
As many as 2,500 officers were expected to travel to the funeral. It was a sobering trip but the blue ribbons, waving flags and crowds of community members along the way go a long way to bolster Davis’ morale.
“It puts a feeling of appreciation like you’ve never had before, seeing those members of the community out here supporting you,” Davis said.
After funeral services were held Tuesday, thousands of people came out to show their support to El Dorado County Deputy Brian Ishamael, his family and the law enforcement community at large.
"They need to know people are here backing them"
Every freeway overpass along Highway 50 near Sacramento was packed for at least an hour before and during the procession.
Frank Ramisch was one of the first people to stand along a bicycle overpass over Highway 50 near Folsom Boulevard hanging a blue line flag.
“You get to be a certain age and you realize there’s important stuff and there’s not important stuff. And I just felt this is important,” Ramisch told FOX40.
Ramisch watched the funeral services for Ishmael on his phone. He said he really admired his work ethic.
“Knowing how we can change under stress. Evidently, he was the same guy whether he was answering a call or brewing a pot of coffee at the station,” Ramisch said. “And if I was in trouble, I would want his calm demeanor helping me."
Likewise, Andrew and Janie Lippert wanted to come out to not only pay their respects but to teach their kids how much a police officer can sacrifice protecting their community.
“They need it, they need our support. They need to know people are here backing them,” Andrew said. “My 3-year-old Janelle here she’ll probably remember this forever and just kind of builds a good foundation in our opinion.”
“And the kids need to see it,” Janie said. “They need to understand that this is part of being American.”
After the funeral, a convoy of police cars from dozens of agencies left Roseville, heading south on Hazel Avenue. From Nimbus through Prairie City Road on up to Shingle Springs, thousands came out to overpasses along Highway 50, remaining quiet as Deputy Ishmael’s body passed on his way to his hometown of Placerville for burial.
But Ramisch said the displays were not just for Deputy Ishmael and his family, but for all men and women who wear a uniform.
“I’d want them protecting me and my family and if this is the least I can do, I’ll do it,” he said.