Community pays respects to fallen officer and hometown hero Eric Joering
Friends, family and the community will say their last good-byes to Eric Joering on Friday at the Hill Funeral Home. It’s less than a mile from police headquarters where Joering spent the past 16 years on the job, protecting and serving the city he grew up in.
People lined the streets of Westerville to pay their respects on Monday because police officers like Joering put their lives on the line every day.
Some who turned out for the procession wore blue ribbons, some carried flags and signs. There were baby strollers and wheelchairs. Children laughed played as they waited to see the mass of police cruisers, and officers’ salutes.
Janine Mayville of Westerville knew Joering because she attended the citizen’s police academy.
“I have lived here all my life. The police department has always been someplace you can always count on,” said Mayville. “Unfortunately this happens everywhere and we are all sad about that.”
Joering was husband to Jamie, and a father to four daughters. Bailey Hunt coached two of the girls in cheerleading and said she is heartbroken at the loss. “He is a great person altogether, amazing husband, amazing father. Every time I text my friend it seems like they are on vacation doing something absolutely fun for the family.”
Joering was a K-9 officer who people said was always smiling. The Westerville South graduate liked being around children and the schools. Chris Exley’s family worked with Joering at the police department. “He was such a nice guy. If you see the pictures of him with the dogs and kids it’s just amazing, the way he worked with them and taught them.”
Friends said Joering would have hated the attention focused on him, but would have appreciated the community sharing time together and helping his loved ones get through the horrific days ahead.
“I see everyone coming together and I really hope that they can reach their arms out and just wrap them up tight because they need it now more than ever.”