INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) - IMPD Officer Rod Bradway was remembered on Thursday by colleagues, family members and public officials who shared stories of his bravery, his childhood and his sometimes mischievous personality.
Bradway was killed in the line of duty on Friday. He was shot in a northwest side apartment after responding to a domestic disturbance.
Bradway was a husband and father. He was also a firefighter and youth soccer referee. On Thursday, thousands of people gathered to remember him. His funeral was at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
"Words fail when heroes fall," Gov. Mike Pence said during the funeral service. "In times like these, words can never give proper voice to our sorrow, our gratitude, our respect. And still, we must try."
- PHOTOS | Images from Thursday's services
Indianapolis Mayor Ballard also spoke, discussing Bradway's impact on the city.
"No one in this city will ever wonder whether Officer Bradway made a difference," Ballard said. "We all mourn his loss."
Nappanee Mayor Larry Thompson shared a story from the northern Indiana community where Bradway was raised.
"When Rod was 16 years old, something happened that changed our community forever. A police officer was shot and killed in our downtown," Thompson said.
The officer killed in Nappanee, like Bradway, was wearing a bulletproof vest. Years later, that dead officer's partner at the time was killed while responding to a domestic disturbance while working for another police agency.
Thompson also shared a story about Bradway as a young man. He was a key part of the town's football team — kicker.
"On a cold Friday night against an arch rival, Warsaw — much larger than our school — Rod was sent on the field with almost no time left on the clock to try and kick a 50 or 51 yard field goal. Warsaw thought it would be a fake," Thompson said. "They snapped the ball and Rod Bradway with that courage and confidence and all the work he had put into being a kicker – you guessed it, he nailed it."
His funeral was at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. A procession followed, stopping at Wayne Township Fire Department, where Bradway was a firefighter, and Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department's northwest district.
At Crown Hill Cemetery, graveside services included the folding of an American Flag handed to Bradway's family. Officers also put white carnations on the casket. The carnations had a red dot on them, symbolizing the blood shed by Bradway.
5 P.M. UPDATE: The Johnson County Sheriff's Office says deputies were working multiple accidents, including slide-offs, property damages and personal injury crashes all over the county.
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