‘We’re going to truly miss him’: Officer Kennis Croom laid to rest in hometown of Tuscaloosa
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (WBRC) - The city of Tuscaloosa showed its support Saturday afternoon for a fallen officer who sacrificed his life protecting others.
Meridian Officer Kennis Croom was shot and killed last week in the line of duty while responding to a domestic situation.
Mourners packed the gym at Shelton State Community College to say their final goodbyes to Officer Croom and support his family.
“It did not surprise me when I learned that Kennis’ tragic incident occurred on his day off. Who else but a Croom would be working on his day off to try and help some body,” said John Merrill, Alabama Secretary of State.
Croom is credited with protecting four children at the time of his death.
He was remembered as a good man, a trusted friend and a hero.
There is no substituting in life for courage. To have that courage to meet that moment, we’re blessed to know that that still exists in this world,” added Tuscaloosa Mayor Walt Maddox.
Officers from West Alabama, Mississippi and beyond paid their final respects.
Sgt. Tavaras Smith with the Meridian Police Department explained the importance of finishing what Croom started before he was killed in the line of duty.
“Myself and my brothers and sisters in law enforcement worked nonstop until we found the coward that took Croom’s life. It was an honor to place officer Croom’s cuffs on that subject and assist Croom in making his final arrest,” explained Sgt. Smith.
Saturday’s celebration of life ceremony gave Croom’s loved ones time to mourn his death and celebrate a life sacrificed in service to others.
“We’re going to truly miss him. From the smile, the jokes he made with all the officers. But we have great lasting memories of Officer Croom,” said Chief Deborah Naylor-Young with the Meridian Police Department.
Following the funeral, people gathered on the side of road to support the procession of vehicles that helped carry Officer Kennis Croom to his final resting place in his hometown of Tuscaloosa.
He leaves behind three children.
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