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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California
Southern California

Funeral Held For Downey Police Officer In Downtown L.A.

Family, friends and fellow police officers gathered in downtown Los Angeles to mourn the loss of officer Galvez.

Family, friends and fellow police officers packed the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels in downtown Los Angeles to mourn the loss of slain Downey police officer Ricardo Galvez. 

Officials including Los Angeles County District attorney Jackie Lacey, Downey Mayor Luis Marquez and Downey Police Chief Carl Charles eulogized Galvez.

Charles mentioned Galvez’s propensity for selfless acts of kindness, recounting a time he had stopped an older lady who was driving with expired registration because she couldn’t afford to pay it.

“Out of genuine compassion, Ricky let her go with a warning,” he said. “The very next day he showed his true measure as a man of goodwill when he paid the registration for her.”

Charles said Galvez’s natural leadership qualities were always on display. He cited the fact that Galvez had undertaken the task of organizing a 120-mile marathon involving law enforcement agencies from across the country.

Hundreds of officers from across the nation came to Los Angeles to pay their respects to Galvez. They wore black bands across their badges and saluted his casket which was draped in an American flag.

Lieutenant Christopher Popovic from the NYPD said he was there to stand in solidarity with his “brothers in blue.”

“If you’re a police officer or a law enforcement officer, you’re our brother,” he said.

While paying tribute to one of their own fallen members may be more common for larger departments like the NYPD or the LAPD, it’s a rare occurrence for Downey Police. There have been 209 LAPD officers killed in the line of duty according to the Officer Down Memorial Page. This is only the second officer from Downey to be killed.

To see an infographic of police killings in Los Angeles County, click here.

“As a medium to small-sized department, we know everyone by first name,” Downey police Lieutenant Mark McDaniel said. “We take great pride in being a family, and losing our brother in this fashion at 29 years old -- it’s absolutely devastated my department.”

Galvez was fatally shot on November 18 as he was returning to the Downey police station from a canine training session. Officials have described the circumstances leading up to his death as a botched robbery attempt.

The final eulogy was delivered by one of Galvez’s best friends in the department, Officer Drew Lofquist, who alluded to his friend’s favorite movie, the police drama “End of Watch.”

“As we watched the movie, we’d say to each other: ‘If this happened I’d do this, if that happened, I’d do that,’” he said. “As the closing scene dawned, Ricky’s voice became serious and he said to me, if this ever happened, I would want you to speak at my funeral.”

To hear more audio from the funeral, click here.

Reach staff reporter Brian Bencomo , and follow him on Twitter here.

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