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Jeremy Henwood remembered as 'a true warrior' as a Marine, police officer

August 12, 2011 | 11:41 am

Click here to see more photos from the funeral. Slain San Diego police officer Jeremy Henwood was remembered at a tearful memorial service Friday as "a true warrior who stood in harm's way with us, and now he's fallen."

Police Chaplain Herb Smith told 3,000 members of law enforcement, numerous public officials and members of the San Diego public assembled at the Rock Church that, "our tears will water the ground of his memory" but that Henwood's life will serve as an example of bravery and commitment to public service.

Henwood, 36, died early Sunday of wounds suffered Saturday afternoon when he was shot while sitting in his patrol car in the City Heights neighborhood.

PHOTOS: Funeral for San Diego police officer Jeremy Henwood

His assailant was killed moments later by police when he refused to surrender and reached for a shotgun, the same weapon used to attack Henwood. No motive for the attack on Henwood has been revealed.

Henwood, a captain in the Marine reserves, had just rejoined the Police Department after a deployment to Afghanistan. He had also made two combat deployments to Iraq.

Police Capt. Lawrence McKinney, commander of the Mid-City Division where Henwood served, said that he "went boldly into harm's way, knowing full well that he might not come back someday."

McKinney, his voice breaking with emotion, urged the crowd to remember Henwood's courage rather than "the cowardly act of one lost soul," a reference to Dejon Marquee White, 23, Henwood's assailant.

The Rev. Miles McPherson, senior pastor at the Rock Church, said that while police officers and San Diego residents are mourning Henwood's killing, they should know that they will see Henwood again in the afterlife.

"It's winter now, but springtime is coming," he said. "Jeremy is gone but the story goes on ... You will meet him again."

A procession of hundreds of police cars from multiple agencies led to the church. Among the public officials in attendance were Gov. Jerry Brown, San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders, state Atty. Gen. Kamala Harris, and Dist. Atty. Bonnie Dumanis.

Police Chief Bill Lansdowne said that in the investigation that came after the shooting, police found on the surveillance tape of a local McDonald's restaurant images of Henwood buying a hamburger for a timid 10-year-old boy -- an act of kindness that exemplified Henwood.

Henwood "challenged himself every day" to protect his community and nation, Lansdowne said. "God  bless Jeremy," he added.

Henwood is survived by his parents, Beverly and Robbie Henwood, of San Antonio; a brother, Robbie Jr.; and sister, Emily. Born in Canada, Henwood grew up in Texas, attended the University of Texas and was an enlisted Marine before becoming an officer.

Emily Henwood, between sobs, said that, "I am really proud to be here and to see his extended family ... I think it goes without saying that Jeremy was a great man and a hero to his country."

Looking at the flag-draped casket, she said, "I didn't say it enough to him but 'Jeremy, I love you and I always will.' "

Burial is set for a national cemetery in San Antonio, where Henwood's parents reside.

Henwood's parents _ his mother is a physician, his father a dentist _ agreed to have his organs used for transplant and two kidney patients were recipients.

"Even in death, Jeremy was saving lives," said his brother, Robbie Jr.


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-- Tony Perry and Don Bartletti in San Diego

Photo: Standing with civilians holding flags, San Diego police patrol officers salute the funeral procession for police Officer Jeremy Henwood on Friday as it moves along Friars Road en route to a memorial service at Rock Church in Point Loma. Credit: Don Bartletti / Los Angeles Times