Funeral Held For Officer Scott Patrick

Updated: 08/06/2014 6:13 PM
Created: 08/06/2014 1:53 PM

(KSTP) - Friends, family and community members packed a West St. Paul church Wednesday to remember a father, husband and public servant who lost his life last week.

Nineteen-year Mendota Heights Police Department veteran Scott Patrick was shot and killed during a traffic stop Wednesday, July 30. He leaves behind a wife and two teenage daughters.

A funeral for Patrick was held Wednesday at 11 a.m. at the family's long-time church, St. Stephen's Lutheran Church in West St. Paul. It’s the same place Patrick married his wife, Michelle, 26 years ago.

Along with law enforcement from across the state, Governor Mark Dayton and Senator Amy Klobuchar were at the funeral paying their respects to Patrick and his family.

Thousands of people are crowding the streets, waving flags, as the funeral procession begins, and the casket is escorted to Acacia Park Cemetery, where Patrick will be laid to rest.

The procession route is about eight miles long and winds through West St. Paul and Mendota Heights, the places where Patrick spent most of his time. Those who are planning the arrangements say that seeing members of the public gather along that route can be one of the most powerful and comforting moments of the day.

"They feel it, they really feel it," Kevin Torgerson with Minnesota's Law Enforcement Memorial Association said. "People are showing signs and waving flags as the family goes by; the family always says how important it is to see that support from the community."

“[The family is] really trying to get a grip on it,” Mike Brue, Patrick’s half-brother, said before the visitation Tuesday, which was held at the same church. “It’s a rollercoaster ride for them.”

At the funeral, Brue said, "My brother knew the risks of the job...This big-picture problem solver was living a lot of his dream. Then in an instant, he's gone."

Mendota Heights officers shared memories of Patrick saying no words can describe the devastation of losing a brother and a partner.

"Scott personified what community policing is all about. He never forgot where he came from. He never looked at himself as being better than anyone else," said Mendota Heights police officer Robert Lambert through tears. "The biggest lesson I have learned from him; to remain humble and deeply rooted in the values and morals that guide you...Scott I love you, we love you. Rest now. We'll take your watch from here."

There will be two waves to the procession; the first will include law enforcement officials from around the state, and the second will be 20-30 minutes later and includes the Mendota Heights Police Department and Patrick's family.

At the cemetery, bells will ring 22 times – one time for each year Patrick served as a police officer. There will also be a flyover.

Minnesotans all around the state will be paying respect to Patrick. Gov. Mark Dayton has ordered U.S. and Minnesota flags at half-staff in his honor; the governor's order applies to all state and federal buildings in Minnesota from sunrise to sunset Wednesday.

People are lining the streets as the funeral procession for fallen Mendota Heights police officer Scott Patrick drives by.
Photo: KSTP/Brandi Powell