ROSEVILLE (CBS13) – Thousands of law enforcement officers from around the state gathered at a Roseville church on Monday to pay final respects to a Galt police officer killed in the line of duty last week.
Officer Kevin Tonn, 35, was shot and killed Jan. 15 when he went to question a possible suspect who fit the description of a burglar. Authorities say the gunman, 30-year-old Humphrey Kenneth Gascon Jr., then shot and killed himself.
The public service was held at Adventure Christian Church in Roseville. Speakers included Galt Mayor Marylou Powers, who said Tonn “was loved by the entire community,” and Loren Cattolico, who hired Tonn in September 2009 after Tonn served as a Galt reserve officer for a few months.
He said Tonn “served the community with honesty, integrity and unwavering commitment.”
“We are grateful to share part of Kevin’s life. We would take away the pain if we could,” Galt Police Chief William Bowen said in addressing’s Tonn’s family.
His cousin Jarrett Tonn, who is a detective with the Galt department, said Kevin “loved being a cop and even that might be an understatement. He gave the ultimate sacrifice.”
Very few people knew Kevin as well as Jarrett did. The cousins served in the Roseville Explorers police program together and Jarrett said becoming a police officer fulfilled a childhood dream for Kevin.
“We always considered ourselves brothers, and I always will consider him my brother,” he said. “We had a special bond, one that got even stronger as we served together as police officers.”
He said Kevin’s death was sad but not tragic.
“Giving one’s life to protect others is never a tragedy,” he said. “Kevin knew that, he believed that and he lived that until his final breath.”
After the memorial, a procession traveled from the church to East Lawn Memorial Park, where Tonn was laid to rest.
The memorial service was attended by dozens of K9 officers and their dogs. Tonn was a Galt K9 officer with partner Yaro, who was inside the church for the service.
Tonn, who grew up in Roseville, was with the Galt department for three and a half years. He also served as a military police officer and a firefighter in New York state before returning to the area and attending the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Academy.
His service was attended by thousands of law enforcement officers from all over the state and beyond.
“He was the kind of officer every chief hopes to hire,” Cattolico said.
Monday’s events started with the U.S. honor flag arriving at Sacramento International Airport on an American Airlines flight, where it was escorted to the funeral by Galt Police Officer Kyle Slater. A bagpiper played as honor guards left the airport with the flag.