Officers honor a fallen hero by doing job they were called to do

IMPD Officer Joe Keller
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As he heads out to patrol the streets on the city's north west side, IMPD Officer Joe Keller passes by a flag at half-staff and the patrol car of fallen IMPD Officer Rod Bradway.

"We know the risk we take. We know what this job entails," said Keller as Eyewitness News rode along with him on Monday's middle shift.

Both the flag and Officer Bradway's police car are grim reminders to these men and women in uniform, that any run could be their last.

"We know that it could happen to any one of us on any call, but if we're not here to do it, who will?" Keller asked.

This is a police department in mourning, but right now, there's no time for tears.

"We know we still have a job to do. We know in a situation like this, the best way to honor those that have been...those that have to go back out and do the job that they were doing and do it to the best of our ability," said Keller.

In the Northwest District, that can mean any number of situations.

Monday, that meant arresting a man Keller learned had a warrant for theft out on him.

"We always need to be vigilant about what's going on and keep our wits about us, even though we're in mourning," said Keller.

For this 29-year-old officer who's been with IMPD five years, it comes down to a Bible verse he has written inside his police cap.

"It's Roman 13:4," said Keller.

"For he is God's servant to do you good. But if you do wrong, be afraid. For he does not bear the sword for nothing. He's is God's servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer," read Keller, who said the wrongdoers are everywhere.

"We know that there's bad people out there that want to do bad things to good people, prey on the weak and we're here to stop that," he explained.

That's what Keller said Bradway was doing last Thursday.

"I believe he was there at the right time," said Keller. "That woman's alive. That child's alive and the second officer's alive.

"The Bible even says, 'Blessed are the peace makers.'"

For IMPD officers like Keller, right now it's not just about making the peace, it's about finding it, too, after losing one of their own in the fight.