A Final Salute

The 4 Oakland police officers shot by a thug parolee were buried today. The memorial service was massive, but mostly it was fellow cops who turned out: More than 20,000 honor slain Oakland police

Rumbling corteges of motorcycle officers escorted each hearse in miles-long processions to the arena, causing traffic delays on most East Bay freeways in the morning and again in the afternoon. Along the way, police officers and firefighters stood in silent salute on highway overpasses.

At the arena, police vehicles passed underneath a giant American flag hanging between the extended ladders of two Oakland fire trucks, maintaining a tight and sharp formation, just as Dunakin would have liked it, his colleagues said.

Their badges wrapped with black bands of mourning, hundreds of officers in dress uniforms lined the steps outside the arena and saluted as one by one, honor guards escorted four flag-draped caskets inside, followed by the officers' families. A sign at the complex read, "Forever Heroes."

Hundreds of police vehicles - bomb-squad trucks, motorcycles, Ford Crown Victoria and Dodge Charger cruisers - filled the parking lot. There were police cars from Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Boston and New York. A rainbow of uniforms filled the arena and the adjacent Oakland Coliseum, where an overflow crowd of several thousand watched the service on two big screens.

Many officers dabbed at their eyes with white gloves as the caskets were placed in front of a flower-adorned stage beside their pictures. The police motorcycles of Dunakin and Hege and two pairs of empty boots sat nearby.

Meanwhile, there are people in Oakland saying "Don't forget about the fifth victim!" meaning the killer. No we won't forget him. But, we won't remember him fondly. 

Meanwhile, Oakland's useless mayor received a well-deserved cut from the bereaved family of one officer.Mayor asked to forgo speech at officers' funeral:

Oakland Mayor Ron Dellums is attending Friday's funeral for four slain city police officers, but will not be speaking at the request of at least one killed officer's family.

The mayor's spokesman, Paul Rose, said Dellums turned down a police offer to give opening remarks after at least one of the families requested he not be among the dignitaries speaking at the ceremony.

Dellums has been leading anti-cop rallies and marches since he was associated with the Black Panthers. He has long been a proponent of "police watchdogs," pro-criminal civil rights laws, and disarming cops. If there was a guy whining about "brutality," Dellums has always been there to lend a sympathetic ear. He is not only an inappropriate speaker at this funeral. He is in appropriate as the mayor of a city grappling with major crime issues. But, he's a Progressive Lion, so it's rare that anyone raises a peep in protest. Good for the bereaved family for finally standing up to him.

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