HAMPTON, Va. (WAVY) — Mourners from across the country and this region gathered at the Liberty Baptist Church to say their final goodbye to Trooper Chad Dermyer.
Dermyer, a former Marine and Gloucester resident, died in the line of duty last week after James Brown III shot him at a Greyhound bus station last Thursday. More than 4,000 were said to have been in Hampton for the service. Outside the church sat the patrol car of Dermyer, covered in flowers.
Tuesday’s funeral service was an emotional one for many who knew him, including Cyndi Grace — who was Dermyer’s partner for four years at the Newport News Police Department.
Grace said she and Dermyer were so close as partners, they were called “Grace-Myer” as she gave the eulogy.
“For the next four years we were together, always. When you saw one of us, you saw the other. We were two people, but one unit,” Grace said.
She choked back tears as she talked about Dermyer’s smile, “He had a megawatt smile. A true genuine smile that would illuminate any room he was in.” She also called Dermyer a humble leader who lead by example.
Trooper Ira Dallam who joined the state police with Dermyer, talked about the colleague, friend and brother he was.
“Without the red cape and the tights, I thought he was Superman to be honest with you. He could do anything,” Dallam said.
Colonel W. Steven Flaherty, Virginia State Police Superintendent, knew Dermyer and remembered the true professional he was on and off duty.
“He had incredible personality and that’s what made him so good because people were drawn to him,” Flaherty said.
In referencing last Thursday’s shooting, Flaherty said, “Chad was doing what Chad loved to do … protect and serve others. And man, was he good at it.”
Flaherty added, “You can ask one of the ladies who survived the shooting last Thursday. She talked about Chad … and attributed her life being spared to Chad and his actions that day. She’s absolutely correct.”
He called Dermyer’s devotion to his family his defining characteristic. Grace addressed Dermyer’s wife, Michelle, and children, who were in attendance at the service.
There was an out-pour of support from local communities and across the nation for Trooper Dermyer in the wake of last Thursday’s shooting.
Today’s funeral service was followed by a procession to Gloucester County for a private burial. The 30-mile procession feature hundred of police motorcycles, and a long line of friends and family.
Many local residents from Hampton to Gloucester came out and stood along the route to pay their respects for Dermyer and to honor all law enforcement.