Community Says Goodbye To Fallen Rich Square Police Chief
Posted July 21, 2000 7:00 a.m. EDT
NORTHAMPTON COUNTY — Rich Square police chief Joe White was laid to rest Saturday. Hundreds of mourners came out to bid their final farewell.
Friends, family, co-workers and state law enforcement agencies gathered at Rich Square Creecy Elementary School to remember a man who gave his life in protecting the small town. They remembered him as caring and compassionate -- an authority figure that had a soft spot for children.
"Everyone, even the kids who threw rocks and broke out the windows, loved him," says Rich Square mayor John Pellam.
White's flag-draped coffin was a solemn reminder to law enforcement officers of the risks they take every day. Former police chief Eddie Buffalo knows the dangers of the job first-hand.
"When I got shot, Officer White was the first officer who came to my rescue. This past Sunday, I was supposed to relive him at 6 o'clock," Buffalo says.
White was not able to complete his shift after he was shot to death during a traffic stop. Despite a massive manhunt that involved 150 officers, police have not found the suspect or the vehicle. While the search continues, family and friends mourn the man and his legacy.
"I told my husband every man everywhere can take a lot of things from him. We're going to miss him," says friend Yvonne Perry.
Deputies from the Davidson County Sheriff Department traveled to Northampton County to watch over Rich Square while the town's police force could attend the funeral.