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MPD Crossing Guard becomes first non-officer to receive Purple Valor Award

A 71-year-old Milwaukee Crossing Guard killed in a hit and run crash was laid to rest Saturday.

More than a hundred friends and family members filled All Saints Catholic Church on Milwaukee's northside, to say goodbye to Andrew Tyler.

Tyler was hit by a car while walking to his post near Kluge Elementary on November 10th. The driver never stopped. 

    "It's been a nightmare," says his daughter Sharon. "One minute, you're having dinner with him, and the next minute he's in the hospital fighting for his life. And he fought, until the very, very end, he didn't want to give up." 

After numerous surgeries and weeks in the hospital, Tyler passed away on December 7th. 

At his funeral Saturday, he received the Milwaukee Police Department's Purple Valor/Purple Star Award. 

    "It's a medal we give out to people that have been injured or wounded in the direct performance of duties," says Police Chief Ed Flynn. "This is the first time we've bestowed this award on a non-police employee." 

Flynn presented the award to a standing ovation, including about a dozen crossing guards who came to show support. 

    "We want to make sure his family sees that we see the importance of his sacrifice, and that we honor him in the same way we would one of our police officers," says Flynn.

Flynn says police are still searching for the driver involved in the incident. 

    “The person who did this would be well served to step forward because certainly coming forward and taking responsibility will have an impact on how your conduct is charged," says Flynn.

Tyler's family says they're hoping that will happen soon. 

    "Do the right thing, and be a decent human being." 

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