Group from Nappanee traveling to Indy for fallen officer's funer - Fox 28: South Bend, Elkhart IN News, Weather, Sports

Group from Nappanee traveling to Indy for fallen officer's funeral

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Nappanee native, Officer Rod Bradway was killed in the line of duty early Friday morning.

Bradway was shot and killed when he entered an apartment answering a woman's cry for help.

He was awarded his department's Medal of Honor and Purple Heart Wednesday in Indianapolis.

"I think everyone's going to represent Nappanee and the Nappanee friends of the Bradways," says Nappanee Mayor Larry Thompson.

A group of about 30 people will leave Nappanee on a bus Thursday morning for Officer Rod Bradway's funeral in Indianapolis.

"This is a way that we can honor Rod's life and extend to his family our deepest sympathies and show by example that we do care," says Thompson.

The Indianapolis Police Department will escort the bus into town. They'll then have a private meeting with Bradway's parents before heading to the service.

Mayor Larry Thompson says the group is mostly friends of Bradway's parents who are still active in Nappanee.    

Also taking the bus is the fallen officer's High School Track Coach, Fred Myers.

"I told my wife the other day, 'I have to go down. I just have to,'" says Myers.

Myers says Bradway was a particularly mature High School athlete with a big heart.

He liked to sit in the front of the bus to talk to his coach while he drove them to a meet.

"He enjoyed nothing more than using his gifts to benefit everybody else. He'd sit by me on the bus, (and ask) 'What do we need?" says Myers.

Others making the trip are some who never knew him, like members of the Nappanee Police Department.

"Any time an officer needs help, we're going to go do what we can to help them. Whether it's local or whether it's down in Indy. And that's on the clock or off the clock, anything we can do to help, we're going to be there," says Patrolman Aaron Leming.

In these difficult circumstances, the town of Nappanee just wants Bradway's family to know how much they care.

"I always pictured Rod as the cowboy with the white hat who would always save the day at the end," says Myers.

Bradway is the third Nappanee native to lose his life in the line of duty.

There's a  memorial outside the Nappanee Police Department for Brandt Nine who was killed almost 25 years ago. His wife will also be at the funeral Thursday.

The Nappanee Police Department is sending seven officers along with an EMS and Fire vehicles.

The Elkhart City Police Department is also sending personnel.

Mayor Thompson will speak at the funeral. He says he's honored to do so.

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