A solemn ceremony was held Thursday for fallen Indianapolis Metro Police Officer Perry Renn.
Renn, a 22-year veteran on the force, was shot and killed in the line of duty last weekend. On Thursday, a flag ceremony was held in honor of Officer Renn.
Mayor Greg Ballard, IMPD Chief Rick Hite and other members of the Metro Police Department took part in the ceremony, which preceded visitation at the Crown Hill Funeral Home. Visitation runs until 8:00 pm.
"By putting on his uniform and going to work every day, Perry made this a great place to live," said Chief Hite.
Renn was awarded the Medal of Honor and Purple Heart. Chief Hite placed a Purple Heart over the uniform of Officer Renn, who served ten years in the US army before joining IMPD. The chief also awarded officer Renn the Medal of Honor for his dedication to IMPD.
Hundreds of people - police officers and civilians alike - attended Thursday's visitation. All of them say they had to come and honor Renn's sacrifice. Many of these citizens didn't even know Renn, but feel like they know him now.
"I got a lot of respect for these guys, because if it wasn't for them, we wouldn't be able to live in our home. These guys are our angels. They watch over us," said Gertrude Harris of Indianapolis. Respect
for the fallen officer came from the people he served to the people he served with.
"He was a credit to the department and to his family," said retired IMPD Lt. Michael Luckett.
Luckett worked with and supervised Renn on the police force for years.
"I think that he really did care about the people that he worked with and there's a lot of good people in the area that are just trying to make the best of their lives and I think it was important to him to do what he could to make sure that they are safe and had a chance," Luckett said.
In his dress uniform, Hite put Thursday's visitation into perspective.
"It is a somber day in a sense, but it's also a day when we can lift up a memory of a guy the community loves. His family loved him and, let's face it, IMPD lost a giant," he said.
Renn was the kind of guy that would be an example to IMPD's officers in training. The kind of officer his chief doesn't want others on the force to forget.
"We want to dedicate the rest of the year to his memory. Guys like him and (fallen IMPD Ofc. Rod) Bradway are the examples we want to see in our young people in the academy right now," Hite said.
His funeral is at 11 a.m. Friday at Banker's Life Field House with burial at Crown Hill Cemetery. He will be laid to rest in the "Heroes of Public Safety" section.
Many people attended a blue light vigil Wednesday evening to share their grief and join together in prayer to remember the fallen officer.
The Fraternal Order of Police hosted the vigil in honor of Renn. Hundreds packed the FOP lodge on South Shelby Street to show support, including officers and their families.
"Officer Renn heroically got out of his car that night," FOP Vice President Rick Snyder told vigil attendees.
The crowd chanted "yes" and "amen" to that statement.
"Because many of our neighbors, our citizens aren't willing to come out of their doors at night to help stand this line," Snyder added.
A memorial has been set up at IMPD's North District headquarters, 3120 E. 30th Street, to continue to honor and remember Renn. His patrol car will be on display until Friday.
Visitation: 2-8 p.m. today at Crown Hill Funeral Home
Funeral: 11 a.m. July 11 at Banker's Life Field House
Graveside services: following the funeral July 11 in the "Heroes of Public Safety" Section of Crown Hill Cemetery.
Here's the route for the funeral procession from Banker's Life Fieldhouse to Crown Hill Cemetery:
The procession proceeds north on Pennsylvania and east on Washington to Delaware where it heads north, then along Fall Creek Parkway to 30th St where it proceeds east. The procession will stop in front of IMPD North District on 30th St. where dispatch will issue the final 10-42 for Officer Renn. After the 10-42, the procession goes under the Garrison Flag which will be very close to North District. The procession then heads east on 30th St to Sherman Dr and north on Sherman to 38th St. West on 38th St to Boulevard. South on Boulevard to the 34th St Entrance at Crown Hill.