This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
So many Utah officers volunteered to escort the body of a Las Vegas police officer to his final resting place, the organizers had to turn some away.
Fallen Las Vegas Police Officer Alyn Beck's body arrived at Salt Lake City International Airport Sunday afternoon, in a coffin draped in the American flag. As his loved ones helped carry the coffin to an awaiting hearse, they walked past more than two dozen uniformed Utah officers, standing at attention, who had volunteered to escort Beck's body. He is to be buried in Afton, Wyo., where his in-laws live.
The Utah officers' support was "just so overwhelming," said Elizabeth Krmpotich, Beck's youngest sister, who joined the procession with many other relatives. "We have just felt so much love during this time."
Beck would probably hate all of the attention he's been receiving the past few days, Krmpotich said, but he is most deserving of it. He was a kind, compassionate man, she said and on this Father's Day, leaves behind three children.
Officers from several agencies, including Utah Highway Patrol, Park City police and Summit County Sheriff's Office escorted Beck's body from the airport to the Wyoming line, where troopers from that state were to assume the motorcade.
"It's an absolute honor to show our respect" to a fellow officer, said UHP Col. Daniel Fuhr. Besides the more than 25 officers who started the procession at the airport, more officers from around the state were due to join the motorcade as it progressed, Fuhr said, though he did not have an exact head count.
At least two officers from Beck's force, the Las Vegas Metro Police Department, rode alongside his body as well.
The support has meant a lot to his family.
"There have been so many people who have reached out to us, especially the police department that my brother worked for," Krmpotich said. "… It's been overwhelming how many people have just reached out to touch us in this difficult time. We've seen the worst of people, but yet we've seen the best of people as well."
Beck, and his fellow police officer Igor Soldo, 31, were gunned down in a Las Vegas pizza restaurant ambush on June 8. The shooters fled to a nearby Wal-Mart where they killed a third person before one was fatally wounded by police gunfire and the other killed herself, authorities said.