UTAH COUNTY, Utah -- It was a hero's goodbye attended by some of the state's top political and law enforcement authorities, but the real story of Utah County Sheriff's Sergeant Cory Wride's funeral was told by his sons, his father, his siblings, and his brothers-in-arms.
In a service at the events center at Utah Valley University, police officers from agencies around the intermountain region heard about a man who represented the best of law enforcement.
Two of Wride's children spoke. His teenaged son Tyesun gave the opening prayer, while his adult stepson Nathan Mohler spoke for the family.
"We have been so blessed with all the help you guys have offered," Nathan said, referring to the officers and volunteers who have helped the family through a week dealing with loss.
Two of Wride's colleagues offered their own memories. Deputy Shawn Radmall got the biggest laughs, describing Wride's intense devotion to his family that was even on display during hunting trips.
"I believe the rest of us called our wives every night like we were supposed to, but not Cory. He just wanted to hear Nan's voice or the voices of his kids any time he could and frankly I was a little bit embarrassed for him because this was supposed to be a hunting trip," said Radmall, inspiring a laugh from the crowd.
Governor Gary Herbert, a former Utah County Commissioner, called on the Utahns to remember Cory Wride by dedicating themselves to service.
"I would suggest to us all as a way to always remember and never forget is to look inward and say, 'What kind of service can I render? What more can I do"" Herbert said.
Sheriff Jim Tracy knew Wride well, because the Sergeant had served as his assistant before returning to patrol just weeks before his death.
"We, all of us here, owe you a debt that we cannot repay. Cory we miss you already," Tracy said.
Wride's father Blake spoke at length. He said two days before Wride's death, the sergeant called his father and told him he needed to be home with his family.
"He was a good man who strived to live a good life," Blake said.