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The Lawrence County community is continuing to unite in an effort to honor officer Jerry McCarthy, who was killed Wednesday during a police chase.
Authorities said the 60-year-old officer was killed when a car, allegedly driven by 25-year-old Kylie Barletto, slammed into the passenger side of the patrol car he was in.
Thousands are expected to attend his funeral this week and now fellow first responders are asking the community to help put together a memorial dinner.
Flags at the Shenango Township Municipal Building fly at half staff. There’s a note on the door of the police station and down the road at the fire station and black and blue ribbons wave in the air, all in McCarthy’s honor.
“For all who have died, especially Officer William Jerry McCarthy,” said Assistant Chief Brandon Rishel of the Shanango Township Fire Department.
There were also a prayer at Sunday mass at Saint Vitus in New Castle, the church where people will pay their respects for calling hours on Monday and Tuesday.
“He’s a tremendous person, and he’ll be very, very missed,” said Rishel.
Rishel recalled how down to earth Jerry was, and recalls his faith too.
“Every conversation ended in God bless,” said Rishel.
Now, the Shenango Township Fire Department wants to bless Jerry’s family by organizing a memorial dinner following Jerry’s burial.
“The community support has been tremendous,” said Rishel. “Every business and individual person has really been making a great effort to come out and do everything they can possibly do.”
The department still needs things like pop and water. It’s anticipating hundreds for the funeral.
“I know there’s police officers and firefighters from around the country that will be here,” added Rishel.
Donations can be dropped off at the fire department on East Washington Street in New Castle by noon on Tuesday. Financial donations can be dropped off at the ESB Bank in New Castle.
“It’s really a good thing, the school district , all of shenango township, the supervisors, the fire department, it’s been tremendous to see everybody come together. It’s just a true testament of Jerry’s true character,” said Rishel.