HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - The funeral home director who transported the body of one of the two Hattiesburg police officers who were killed in the line of duty last Saturday is describing his emotional drive from Jackson to Hattiesburg.
Hulett-Winstead Funeral Home director Jason Ross drove the hearse that brought the body of officer Benjamin Deen from the Mississippi State Crime Lab back to the Hub City Monday afternoon. During the trip, countless law officers and first responders lined Highway 49 all the way from the Capital to Hattiesburg to show their respect.
"The outpouring of support from law enforcement, fire agencies, the (emergency medical services), the citizens who lined the highway on both sides coming back was a very emotional thing to see," said Ross.
Deen and officer Liquori Tate were shot to death Saturday night during a routine traffic stop in East Hattiesburg.
Four suspects are in custody in connection with the officers' deaths.
Ross said the large turnout by South Mississippians on his way home Monday was unexpected and impressive.
"It definitely says that people love our law enforcement," he said. "And they care about the people that serve our community, whether it be law enforcement, or military, people stand up for the good kind when something like this happens."
Officer Deen's funeral will be in Hattiesburg Thursday. Officer Tate's funeral will also be in the Hub City on Saturday.