Thousands Attend Funeral For Fallen Police Officer
FENTON (WWJ) - Fallen West Bloomfield police officer Patrick O’Rourke was laid to rest Friday, escorted by thousands of mourners including friends, family and hundreds of fellow men and women in uniform.
A funeral Mass was held at 10:30 a.m. at St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church in Fenton for the 39-year-old father of four who was killed Sunday night while responding to a call of shots fired in a home near Halstead and Pontiac Trail.
WWJ Newsradio 950′s Marie Osborne reported that several eulogies followed the service.
“Perhaps the most poignant moment — Amy O’Rourke is at the podium inside this church holding onto her 8-month-old son, Steven, saying that her husband’s undercover name when he was in narcotics was John Paul after the late pope. And she says that she believe that he is in heaven right now having an awfully great conversation with Elvis, an idol of his,” Osborne reported.
“She told everyone in the congregation that they had soon hoped to have date night. They never go to that, and she said I hope you all take advantage of date night with your spouses and your families the way that Patrick O’Rourke did not have the chance.”
Burial followed Friday afternoon at Fenton’s St. John Cemetery.
West Bloomfield Police Chief Michael Patton said O’Rourke, a 12-year veteran of the force, had “strength and confidence.” He said the fallen officer treated everyone with respect, even people who probably didn’t deserve it.
Patton said it was the end of his shift, but O’Rourke rushed to Sunday night’s call, and was shot through the neck when a gunshot rang through a wall inside the home.
He was known as an excellent police officer but was also a family man.
Judy Fisher of Farmington Hills first met Amy O’Rourke, Patrick O’Rourke’s wife, mother of his four young children — and a neonatal intensive care nurse when her son was born prematurely 10 years ago. And Fisher has never forgotten Amy O’Rourke’s kindness.
That’s why Fisher joined hundreds of people waiting in line to pay respects to Amy’s husband. “She is really the angel that saved by son and for this to happen to such a wonderful person is just mind-boggling,” Fisher said.
Others, like Eric Jillback, waited in line to honor O’Rourke’s profession.
“Sometimes I think we take them for granted and we can’t take them for granted, this is a very unique profession and these guys need to be thanked every day that they do their job,” he said.
Officers from neighboring departments stepped in to patrol West Bloomfield on Friday, so all its officer could attend services.
“They’re all emotionally hurting right now, because they lost one of their best,” Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard said. “Anything he needs, from patrols, to support, we’re there.”
The suspect in the case, 50-year-old Ricky Coley, reportedly took his own life during a nearly 20-hour standoff with police.