Kenosha police driving to New York City for officer's funeral
Friday night, five Kenosha police officers packed up to drive for 12 hours straight -- some of them sacrificing their vacation time -- to honor two men they never met, but still call them family.
\"They know that they can count on us just like we can count on them,\" Officer Dusty Nichols said.
Nichols and members of the Kenosha Police Honor Guard will drive about 850 miles to New York overnight. They'll attend Saturday's funeral for NYPD officer Rafael Ramos. Ramos and his partner, officer Wenjian Liu were both shot in the head while sitting in their squad car last weekend.
\"[The shooting] changes the way you do things a little bit, so you're just a little more aware of what's going on around you,\" Nichols said.
Earlier this week, Jet Blue Airlines offered to fly two officers from any department across the nation to Saturday's funeral. Nichols' crew is too large, so they'll drive on their own dime. But Racine police took the airline up on its offer, thanking Jet Blue for its generosity today on the department's Facebook page.
\"Just to see that many officers all in the same place is very emotional and a very good show of support,\" Nichols said of the airline's offer.
The Kenosha police officers will arrive just a few hours before the service and hope to join in a processional with their squad cars. They'll also hand out locally-made \"blue light\" stickers showing support for police officers before a funeral Nichols knows will bring him to tears.
\"Every time the bagpipes play Amazing Grace when i'm at a funeral I lose it,\" Nichols said. \"Unfortunately, I've had to hear that way too many times.\"