Friends, family say goodbye to DPS officer killed by helicopter

Posted: Updated:

MESA -- Friends and family of DPS Officer Bruce Harrolle said their last goodbyes Monday morning.

Officer Bruce Harrolle remembered

Funeral services took place at Central Christian Church in Mesa.

The 36-year-old DPS officer and paramedic was killed during a mountain rescue in Sedona last week when the rotor blade of his helicopter hit him in the head.

Harrolle was helping a stranded hiker into the helicopter when it happened. He died instantly.

DPS Director Roger Vanderpool said Harrolle was always smiling and was a true professional.

"This man truly dedicated his life to helping, serving and protecting others and last Monday he was doing just that," Vanderpool said. "He was doing the job he loved and I'm sure he had that big smile on his face."

Gov. Janet Napolitano called Harrolle a hero.

Harrolle, who had been with DPS for nine years, leaves behind a wife and two young children.

He is the first DPS office killed in the line of duty since March 2000.

A 25-mile processional from the church to the Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport Aviation Hangar took place after the service.