• 'Hearts are broken' as fallen deputy laid to rest

    By: KIRO 7 News Staff

    Updated:

    More than 650 emergency vehicles lined up in a procession to take fallen Pierce County Sheriff’s Department Deputy Daniel McCartney to a packed public memorial at Pacific Lutheran University before he was laid to rest on Wednesday.

    McCartney, a 34-year-old Navy veteran and married father to three young boys, was shot during a foot chase in early January as he responded to a drug-related home invasion near the small community of Frederickson, 15 miles southeast of Tacoma. McCartney died in the hospital hours later.

    Image: Pierce County Sheriff

    One suspect in his mid-30s was found dead at the scene, and another suspect was arrested following an hours-long manhunt.

    >> Read about the full investigation and suspects here.

    Last week, a short procession took McCartney from the medical examiner's office to a funeral home. Law enforcement agencies and community members across the region honored him on Wednesday with a longer procession and memorial service at Pacific Lutheran University.

    >> See photos from today's procession here

    Scroll down to keep reading.


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    Thousands come line up for procession

    As hundreds of police and fire units lined the 2.5-mile procession route, nearly 1,500 people honored McCartney from the sidewalk. They saluted him, held flags, or silently watched as the procession moved across the Tacoma-area streets, including busy Pacific Avenue.

    When the procession neared Pacific Lutheran University, bagpipers solemnly marched under an American flag raised between two firetrucks.

    A rider-less horse followed behind them. Empty boots hung reverse in the stirrups from that horse, symbolic of the fallen officer killed in the line of duty –  looking back on those left behind. Moments later, limousines carrying surviving members of McCartney’s family stayed near the hearse.

    They rode under the flag together and arrived at the memorial service just before noon.

    2-hour memorial service honors McCartney's life

    Seven pallbearers in law enforcement uniforms carried the casket into the memorial service. A line of dignitaries and Washington State Patrol troopers walked behind them into Olson Auditorium at Pacific Lutheran University.

    The Honor Guard formed a Cordon of Honor as the casket and family were escorted inside the auditorium.

    In the hour leading up to the memorial service, two officers held casket watch, while fellow officers guarded the slain deputy's body until burial.

    The service celebrating McCartney's life started at 1 p.m. with bagpipers playing for a packed auditorium of law enforcement officers and dignitaries. Due to the limited space of the venue, the overflow was directed to other buildings on campus, where community members watched a live stream of the service.

    After the national anthem, a battle streamer with the date of McCartney's end of watch was added to a Pierce County Sheriff's Office flag.

    Speakers included McCartney's aunt, service members, and Sheriff Paul Pastor.

    “We’re here to honor and remember and mourn … one of our own: Daniel McCarty,” said Pastor.

    “One less person of strength or charterer stands beside us. Cierra [wife], I don’t have the right words for you today or for [your sons]. I don’t have the words for your loss or sadness … there are no adequate works for you or the rest of Dan’s family … We can only say we know that your hearts are broken.

    “I know that Daniel was serious about an ethic of service, he stepped forward not just answer a job offer but a calling as a law enforcement officer … It’s not just that he stepped forward and put on a badge. It’s how he wore the badge.”

    McCartney's partner, Deputy Luke Baker, also spoke during the service. He remembered McCartney as a dedicated and caring public service leader.

    >> The service is still underway, watch on KIRO 7 News on-air or here.

    "Dan approached life the same way he approached the job: he was 100% all in," Baker said.

    "One last thing: There's a new K9 in our department who will hitting the streets soon. I met with Dan's boys several days ago and they decided [the dog's] name should be Dan. So I am putting all bad guys in Pierce County on notice. Dan is still coming for you, as am I, as is every person in this department because that's what we do."

    K9 Dan will serve with Baker. Read more about the K9 here.

    When the speakers concluded, a flag detail removed the flag from the casket, folded it, and presented it to Sheriff Pastor. The sheriff then gave the flag to a member of the deputy's family.

    A last radio call was played with the deputy’s badge number being called out, to signify Deputy McCartney’s end of watch and that he is gone but will not be forgotten.

    McCartney was taken to Mountain View Memorial Cemetery, where he was laid to rest during a private graveside service.

    About McCartney

    McCartney is survived by his wife and three young sons. He's remembered as a father, friend, and hero.

    He was a Navy veteran who previously worked  for the Hoquiam Police Department for six years. He was from Yelm and had been on the force for three years.

    >> Read more about McCartney's life here

    Law enforcement agencies across the region have shared their condolences for the fallen deputy.

    “Daniel had a drive on the street as well in the department to bring 110 percent to work every single day,” friend and Hoquiam Police Chief Jeff Myers said in a statement.

    “As a small department, every one of our members is part of a close family; Daniel started his career here and he will always be one of our family,” Myers said. “My wife and I are friends of Daniel’s sister-in-law and we know even more deeply of their pain. We sincerely mourn his loss and wish there was more we could do for his family and his fellow deputies who were out at the scene.”


    Related coverage of fatal shooting of Pierce County deputy


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