Services for Fallen Officer Expected to Draw Hundreds
July 11 — The funeral of Gary police officer Jeffrey Westerfield, who was shot while on patrol July 6th, is scheduled for Monday. Officials say they expect hundreds of fellow law enforcement officers to travel to Gary to pay their respects. Many of the arrangements are being handled by the Fraternal Order of Police. During a logistics meeting on Thursday, Joe Hamer, Chairman of the Indiana FOP’s Critical Incident/Memorial Committee, said the group is anticipating about 600 or more law enforcement vehicles to be in attendance. Hamer says officers from surrounding states often travel to such funerals as a sign of solidarity, and some fly in from across the country.
The funeral will begin at 11:30 am, and its length could depend in part on the number of attendees. When the services conclude, a funeral procession will move west along 4th Avenue to Buchanan Street then south to 5th Avenue and back east to Broadway. From there hundreds of vehicles will proceed south on Broadway to US Highway 30, blocking southbound traffic. Organizers estimate the closure will last a minimum of one hour, but remind motorists that the size of the procession is uncertain. Motorists are advised to avoid Broadway on Monday if possible.
From Indiana Department of Transportation:
Restrictions (7:30 a.m. ET – 2:30 p.m. ET)
– 5th Avenue (U.S. 12/20): One lane of thru traffic open, between Madison and Broadway
– 4th Avenue (U.S. 12/20): One lane of thru traffic open, between Massachusetts and Madison
– Broadway (SR 53): One northbound lane of traffic open (no southbound traffic allowed), between 4th and 5th Avenue.
Restrictions During Funeral Procession (12:15 p.m. ET – 2:30 p.m. ET)
– Toll Road exit to Broadway (SR 53): Closed
– I-94 exit to Broadway (SR 53): Closed
– Long delays expected along entire funeral route