Isanti County community remembers fallen Burnsville officer Paul Elmstrand

Honoring officer Paul Elmstrand

Honoring officer Paul Elmstrand

The Cambridge-Isanti community came together on Sunday night to honor the life of Paul Elmstrand who was killed in the line of duty.

“We always want to know why. Why did this tragedy take place?” Cullen Bartz, program speaker, said.

Paul Elmstrand’s friends and family are searching for answers, but they’re finding comfort through community.

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“I just want to try to keep us focused on the blessings of what Paul has given us from his life,” Paul Maurer, program speaker, said.

Hundreds packed the Cambridge-Isanti high school gym to honor Elmstrand who was shot and killed in a Burnsville shooting Feb. 18. “It feels too soon to say goodbye. It seems our community and our world would have benefited tremendously from his ongoing service,” Mark Solberg, program speaker, said.

Friends shared Elmstrand was a standout in school with an infectious laugh and smile that was hard to forget.

“He exemplified kindness, generosity and grace to those around him,” Bartz said.

People close to him shared stories about the memories they’ll keep close.

“He was a funny guy with a lot of stories. He just had so many great things to talk about,” Maurer said.

Music was woven throughout the program because Elmstrand loved it.

Flowers and photos were around every corner to honor the life of a fallen hero who touched the lives of so many.

“We grieve and our hearts break and we are not without a precious hope,” Solberg said. “I know Paul had that hope living inside of him.”

A public service will be held on Wednesday morning for all three first responders killed during the shooting. You can find details about that service by CLICKING HERE.