'Officer and gentleman' honored at his funeral in New Castle - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

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'Officer and gentleman' honored at his funeral in New Castle

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NEW CASTLE, Pa. – In a century-old church filled to capacity, one thousand people gathered to say goodbye to a man described as "an officer and a gentleman."

Funeral services were held this morning for sixty-year-old Shenango Township Officer William "Jerry" McCarthy who died in the line of duty in a car crash last Thursday in New Castle.

McCarthy died when a police were pursuing 25-year-old Kylie Barletto who they say crashed her car into McCarthy's cruiser after he and another officer responded to a request for backup.

"The thing with Jerry was, this was his job. He lived for this. His big goal was peoples' safety, and the last words he ever told us was, 'God bless, be careful out there.' And today pays a real tribute to what he was like; he was well-liked by everybody," says friend and fellow law enforcement officer Mike Lengauer.

Other friends and fellow officeres offered their condolences, saying what a difference McCarthy made in everyone's life and how much he is loved and missed.

Mourners filled St. Vitus church this morning and spilled out onto the sidewalk to hear the eulogy which was piped outside to the overflow crowds. Law enforcement officers from Pennsylvania and Ohio and other parts of the U.S. attended the funeral service.  Among the mourners was Youngstown's Police Chief, Rod Foley.

The "Mass of Christian Burial" was led by Reverend Frank D. Almade, pastor of St. Vitus.

The crowd was solemn during the remembrance ceremony.

Lawrence County District Attorney, Josh Lamancusa said "we've lost a living example of the police motto to protect and serve." McCarthy's son, a firefighter also spoke at the funeral. 

Following the service, McCarthy's wife, Patty Jo had to be helped out of the church to a waiting limousine as she cried "No, no, no."

Jerry McCarthy's son, Michael McCarthy, delivered a tearful eulogy, reading the letter he wrote to his father in honor of his life.

Nearby, a long line of police and emergency vehicles formed a funeral procession to escort McCarthy to Crestview Memorial Park in Grove City where he will be laid to rest with full military honors performed by the Pennsylvania State Police Ceremonial Unit.

As his flag draped casket is carried out of the church on the way to it's final resting place, one final salute to a man many here call a hero; a man of character, courage and heart who literally gave his life to serve and protect others.

Detective McCarthy is survived by his wife, two sons, a daughter, a stepdaughter and step-son as well as six grandchildren. You can see his entire obituary here: http://www.nogafuneralhome.com/i.php?id=3327

Barletto, has been charged with manslaughter of a law enforcement officer and other charges. She's been held in the Mahoning County jail and faces an extradition hearing back to Pennsylvania on Thursday.

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