Mount Olive, NC — A Wayne County sheriff’s Deputy was laid to rest following a Funeral and procession that brought hundreds of first responders together from across the state.
On Friday, a procession carried the body of Wayne County Sgt. Matthew Fishman from ECU Medical to a Funeral home in Dudley. Tuesday’s Funeral began at 11 am at the University of Mount Olive’s Kornegay Arena and ended around noon, when a group of law enforcement officers carried a flag-draped casket from the building to begin an emotional procession.
The service was live streamed in full.
A crowd lined the roadway as Fishman’s body was carried on a horse-drawn wagon from the Funeral all the way to Wayne Memorial Park. Tearful people shared with WRAL News how much Fishman loved his job and served his community with pride.
Now, he is laid to rest here in the community he served and protected.
A heartfelt memorial for a Hero
The haunting hum of a Lone bagpipe brought an emotional crowd to silence, save the clomping of the horse-drawn caisson carrying Fishman to his final resting place.
Fishman, who dreamed of being a police officer since he was a child, died on Aug. 2 in the line of duty. He and two other deputies were shot the day before while trying to serve an involuntary commitment order for Jourdan Hamilton.
His love and Ultimate sacrifice for his community brought dozens of Strangers to stand along a highway in the heat – as well as hundreds of law enforcement and first responders from across the state.
Fishman, 38, leaves behind a wife and two children, ages 10 and 14. His father, a pastor, describes Fishman as a “compassionate soul.”
“Matthew did what he did because he genuinely cared for others,” says his father. “He is passionate about his job as deputy. He is passionate about his family. He is passionate about his faith. Matthew loves his family – blood and blue.”
Myranda Reese and Haley Quick, two of the mourners standing along the highway across from Wayne Memorial Park, remembered Fishman as part of the bingo hall family, where he worked security.
“We’re going to stand here, hold this sign for him. I hope his wife and whole family sees us over here,” said Reese.
She described him as “a good guy, a great guy, down to earth. Loved everybody. Always had a smile on his face.”
Even in his passing, the fallen Hero will help others survive. He’s an organ donor.
Fishman’s father and the Wayne County sheriff thanked the community here for their support over the last week.