Freeway segment to close for officer's procession - FOX 35 News Orlando

Thousands attend funeral of Phoenix police officer

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It was an emotional farewell to a Phoenix police detective killed in the line of duty a week ago.

He and his partner were shot by a fugitive -- also killed by return fire.  The officer's partner survived.

Detective John Hobbs' wife and three children walked proudly behind his casket and into his service.

"This is the hardest thing I've ever done," said Det. Mike Miller.  "John was a great cop.  Probably the best I've ever worked around.  John was an even greater man, father and husband and a friend."

Detective Miller was there when a wanted suspect shot Hobbs.  On the ground -- a bullet in his heart -- Hobbs kept shooting to save his partners' lives.

"Even at that moment, John wanted to know if I was okay and if A.J. was okay," said Miller.

Then Hobbs made one last request.

"John made me promise him to tell his wife and his kids that he loves them and never allow them to forget that he loves them all," said Miller.

After an 11-mile procession to Phoenix Memorial Park, Chief Daniel Garcia presented Hobbs' widow with a flag, then a hero was laid to rest.

"John didn't just talk the talk. He showed the strength and character of a brave and courageous man.  On this day, he personified everything it means to be a guardian, a protector," said Sgt. Bob Knapp.  "Today I am even more proud to wear this uniform and this badge.  I am honored to have called him my partner and I am honored to have called him my friend."

"John was one of the best men I've ever known.  If you were lucky enough to meet John Hobbs, your life was better because of it," said Miller.

And the other detective shot during the shootout was at Monday's funeral. 

Hobbs worked for the department's Major Offender Bureau, helping catch wanted fugitives.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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