By Ashley Pribicko
April 12, 2009
It was a beautiful sunny spring Saturday –much like the one just a week ago when Pittsburgh police officer Stephen Mayhle was gunned down in the Station Heights neighborhood of Pittsburgh.
A horse drawn, glass-enclosed hearse carried Mayhle’s coffin 3 miles from the Lefdahl funeral home through the streets of downtown Indiana and to his final resting place in the Oakland Cemetery. (See photos at the bottom of the page.)
During the procession, thousands lined the streets holding hands, saluting, and shedding tears - and more than 400 uniformed law enforcement officers and family members gathered around Mayhle’s flag draped casket holding hands, saluting, and shedding tears, all honoring their officer Mayhle.
Bag pipers played as Pittsburgh Police pall bearers moved the casket from the carriage to the grave site. Nate Harper, the Pittsburgh Police Chief, presented Mayhle’s wife Shandra with the American flag that was draped over her husband’s coffin, as their two children, 6-year-old Jennifer and 3-year-old Brooklyn stood nearby as TAPs echoed throughout the wind in the cemetery.
During the 30-minute service, three volleys of shots fired in honor of Mayhle as part of the 21 gun salute.
The silence lingered after the shots. Then a helicopter was heard in the distance and soon the helicopter flew over Mayhle and his loved ones and disappeared into the distance.
The gathering around Mayhle’s casket dispersed, and the people holding their flags along the street began to leave, all saying it was important they paid their final respects to an Indiana County native.
By Mark Bertig
April 11, 2009
An estimated crowd of 3,000 to 4,000 lined the streets of downtown
Indiana to pay final respects to slain Pittsburgh officer Stephen Mayhle who was
carried to his final resting place on a horse drawn hearse. Over 100
police vehicles and another 30 police motorcycles participated in the
Many of the spectators held their hands on their hearts, while others
saluted the hearse as it passed by under a huge American Flag propped
up by two snorkel trucks directly above Eighth and Philadelphia Streets.
People came from all over Indiana County and well beyond. Indiana
Borough Police Chief William Sutton said the procession touched many.
Sutton also said everything went off without incident.