Funeral procession carries fallen deputy

Published: Jan. 4, 2022 at 6:20 PM CST
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FAIRFIELD, Il. (WFIE) - After the funeral for Deputy Riley ended, a procession of law enforcement vehicles carried him through Fairfield and then on to a graveside service in Cisne.

[Previous Story: Deputy Sean Riley laid to rest]

When the people in Wayne County heard the news of what happened to Deputy Riley, it hit them hard.

”Felt like a punch in the stomach. Stuff like that don’t happen in Wayne County,” said Crystal Ray, who came to watch the procession.

”It took my breath away honestly, shocked, scared,” said Shelley Vaughn, also in attendance.

They didn’t hesitate to brave a cold morning and come out to show their support as the procession carrying Deputy Riley made its way through Fairfield after the funeral, and then on to Cisne for a graveside service.

Many came thinking of the deputy’s family.

”We just wanted to show our support for the family. We’ve known Leslie our whole lives, so we wanted to make sure that she knew that the community was behind her and that we all love her,” said Ray.

”You feel for the family, you, just, at a loss for words,” said Vaughn.

A cold morning didn’t seem to slow anybody down. People held flags and signs, and a local school even brought some of its students to watch the event.

It was all capped off with a helicopter carrying a massive American flag along the procession route. It all led to the hearse with Deputy Riley in it, carrying him out of Fairfield.

Some in attendance say when a tragedy like this happens in a small town, it hurts everyone.

[Related Story: Bedford Township Fire crews remember Deputy Sean Riley]

”It feels like it’s happened to a part of your family,” said Ray. “I mean, everybody here’s known everybody forever. I mean, we’ve all been family, and whenever something bad happens to one of us it happens to all of us.”

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