Florida law enforcement, family bid final farewell to fallen Miami Police officer

MIAMI (WSVN) - It was a somber morning in Miami, Friday, as law enforcement officials, family, friends and the South Florida community bid their final farewell to Miami Police Officer Jorge Sanchez, who passed away on Tuesday in a traffic accident.

Law enforcement officials from police departments across the Sunshine State, from Key West all the way to Palm Beach County and Orlando, attended the funeral procession and memorial service to remember their fellow police officer, who was loved and respected by so many.

The hum of motorcycles was heard throughout the city, as the body of Sanchez was transported in a motorcade, escorted by his brothers in blue to Dade County Auditorium.

Police procession.
Police procession en route to Dade County Auditorium, Friday.

Now is their time to say goodbye once and for all to the 21-year veteran, who was only months away from his retirement,

“Nowadays, all we want to do is retire in peace — and in one piece, too,” said the President of the Miami-Dade Police Union, John Rivera, “and sadly, his life was taken.”

Besides the fellow law enforcement officials who were in attendance and Florida Gov. Rick Scott were Sanchez’ family, who are now dealing with this unexpected tragedy.

Sanchez is survived by his mother, fiancée, ex-wife, daughter and two sons. “It’s been extremely hard,” said the President of the Miami Fraternal Order of Police, Javier Ortiz. “They have a 7-year-old son. His life was his father, so when the news is broken to his son, it’s going to be extremely hard.”

Sanchez’s oldest son is also a City of Miami Police Officer. He was filled with grief and pride as he spoke fondly of his late father, who was his role model then and even more so now. “If it wasn’t for him teaching me and showing me how to be a man, I would not be the man who is standing in front of you here today … giving the hardest speech that I never imagined I would have to.”

Also in attendance were hundreds of retired police officers. “You can’t get it out of your blood,” said retired trooper Robert Gomez. “When you see something that happens like this, you really want to support the community, support your fellow law enforcement, brothers that are still active.”

Sanchez was only 53 years old when, on Tuesday, a train reaction, a multi-vehicle crash sent Sanchez flying from his motorcycle onto the hard pavement at the intersection of Southwest Eighth Street and 137th Avenue, in West Miami-Dade.

Police said a vehicle plowed into him from behind.

Police salute the fallen officer.
Police salute the fallen officer.

The accident occurred at around 1:45 p.m. while Sanchez was sitting at a red light on his way to work. First responders immediately transported Sanchez to Kendall Regional Hospital as a trauma alert. He succumbed to his injuries shortly after.

“He was just stopped at a light just like anyone could have been, and then this happens, and he doesn’t make it home,” said retired trooper Robert Gomez.

“Jorge was a special individual,” said Miami Police Lt. Joel Gonzalez about his fallen colleague and close friend during the funeral service. “Many who knew him, and most of you who know him, know him as an incredible friend, Jorge had a passion for his job, for his brotherhood … he later continued riding on a street bike, on a dirt bike and continued that passion.”

A burial will be held at Woodlawn North Cemetery after the funeral ends.

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