FENTON (WWJ) – Fallen West Bloomfield police officer Patrick O’Rourke will be laid to rest Friday, escorted by thousands of mourners including friends, family and fellow members of the force.
A funeral Mass was held at 10:30 a.m. at St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church in Fenton for the 39-year-old father of four who was killed by barricaded gunman Ricky Covey, reportedly distraught at a divorce and impending eviction from his home.
WWJ Newsradio 950′s Marie Osborne reported that several eulogies followed the service.
“Perhaps the most poignant moment — Amy O’Rourke is at the podium inside this church holding into her 8-month-old son, Steven, saying that her husband’s undercover name when he was in narcotics was John Paul after the late pope. And she says that she believe that he is in heaven right now having an awfully great conversation with Elvis, an idol of his,” Osborne reported.
“She told everyone in the congregation that they had soon hoped to have date night. They never go to that, and she said I hope you all take advantage of date night with your spouses and your families the way that Patrick O’Rourke did not have the chance.”
Burial will take place later in the day at Fenton’s St. John Cemetery.
West Bloomfield Police Chief Michael Patton said O’Rourke, a 12-year veteran, was one of his best officers — one of the “rocks of the department.”
Patton said it was the end of his shift, but O’Rourke rushed to the domestic call, and was shot through the neck when a gunshot rang through a wall inside the home.
He was known as an excellent police officer but was also a family man.
Judy Fisher of Farmington Hills first met Amy O’Rourke, Patrick O’Rourke’s wife, mother of his four young children — and a neonatal intensive care nurse when her son was born prematurely 10 years ago. And Fisher has never forgotten Amy O’Rourke’s kindness.
That’s why Fisher joined hundreds of people waiting in line to pay respects to Amy’s husband. “She is really the angel that saved by son and for this to happen to such a wonderful person is just mind-boggling,” Fisher said.
Others, like Eric Jillback, waited in line to honor O’Rourke’s profession.
“Sometimes I think we take them for granted and we can’t take them for granted, this is a very unique profession and these guys need to be thanked every day that they do their job,” he said.
Officers from neighboring departments stepped in to patrol West Bloomfield on Friday, so all its officer could attend services.
“They’re all emotionally hurting right now, because they lost one of their best,” Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard said. “Anything he needs, from patrols, to support, we’re there.”