Updated 06/01/2012 03:53 PM
Trooper Anna's brothers and sisters in law enforcement gather to say farewell
Of the thousands who attended Trooper Anna's funeral were hundreds who'd never even met her. They came from across New York State and from as far as California and Canada. They were her brothers and sisters in law enforcement. Sarah Blazonis reports.
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NORTH SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- The sea of gray was to be expected as New York State Troopers came to pay their last respects to their friend and colleague, Amanda Anna. But the color that dotted the gray represented support both from near and far.
"We all do the same job each and every day. We take a chance each and every day of, you know, possibly not coming home at night," said Gary Catts, a New Jersey State Trooper who traveled with 30 of his fellow officers to attend Friday's funeral.
"Law enforcement all over the place, we all try to stick together, we're all on the same team," said Seth Thomas, a member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police who began his drive from Kingston, Ontario, at 5:30 in the morning to get to the service on time.
"It really makes you feel that we are really a brotherhood and a sisterhood," said New York State Trooper Jack Keller.
Troopers from states including Arkansas, Texas, California, Minnesota, Missouri, as well as officers from all over the U.S. and Canada came to say farewell.
"I did not know Amanda, God bless her, but every time you hear of a line of duty death, you think of the possibility that that might be you," said Dennis Hallion, executive director of the National Troopers Coalition and a 30 year veteran of the New Jersey State Police.
Hallion says Anna is the third trooper nationwide to be killed in the line of duty this year.
"Then what happens is the various state police agencies rally around and send as many representatives from their states as possible," he explained.
The rallying seen at Anna's funeral was also a gesture of support to her family. State Police say she's the first mother New York troopers have lost and their future concern is for her four-year-old son.
"We're helping and trying to support and make sure he's going to be okay for the next few years and the years to come and to make sure we support him in any way we can," said Trooper Keller.
And making sure he knows his mother's sacrifice will never be forgotten by her extended family.