DPD to caravan to fallen officer’s funeral

(Courtesy: Hilliard Police Department)

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — Local law enforcement will pay tribute to their brother in blue in Columbus Wednesday morning.

With heavy hearts, police will make the trip to give a fallen Hilliard officer a hero’s send-off.

Officers from the Miami Valley, including Dayton Police will caravan to Officer Sean Johnson’s funeral. The funeral will take place at St. Paul Church at 10:30 a.m. After the service, there will be a procession to the cemetery with full police honors.

Officer Johnson died in a motorcycle training exercise last week.

Crowds turned out for his visitation Tuesday afternoon.

Officials say any time something happens to one of their own, it strikes a nerve with the entire police community.

“I can tell you it is something that is close to our heart,” said Lt. Mark Ponichtera, Commander of the Dayton Police Department Honor Guard. “Twenty years ago, we had an officer killed in the line of duty in our community; we’ve got 24 in our community. So I was a part of the department 20 years ago when the officer was killed, and it’s a gut-wrenching experience, so you need all the support you can get from all involved in the law enforcement community, so it’s extremely important for us to show our support.”

This is the second time in six weeks members of the Dayton Police Department will travel to Columbus for a fellow officer’s funeral. Columbus police officer Steven Smith was killed in the line of duty in April.

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