September 09, 2017 10:47 PM
Dozens of law enforcement officers escorted the body of Wayzata Police Officer William Mathews from the Hennepin County Medical Examiner's Office to a funeral home Saturday afternoon in preparation for his funeral.
Arrangements are still being finalized, according the the Minnesota Department of Public Safety, which is helping coordinate with the family and the Minnesota Law Enforcement Memorial Association.
Families of current Wayzata police officers stood silently at the David Lee Funeral home as Mathews was brought there. They hugged their relatives shortly after the salute was over.
Community members said the loss has stunned everyone.
"It's a small enough community that everybody knew him," said Rob Fernstrom, who lives in Long Lake.
Fernstrom remembers Mathews from several interactions, including once when he was pulled over.
"He was one that really stood out to me," Fernstrom said. "He was always just very candid, always just very honest, not out to get you, just out to make sure the community is safe. He was serving the community rather than just doing his job."
DPS officials released a statement Saturday afternoon that said Mathews' family has asked for privacy while they "grieve the loss of Officer Mathews."
A memorial fund has been established in Mathews' honor. DPS said details on how people can contribute will be provided on Monday once an account is created.
Updated: September 09, 2017 10:47 PM
Created: September 09, 2017 09:59 PM
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