INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – From family friends to complete strangers, the Indianapolis community is paying their respects and saying thank you to fallen IMPD Officer Perry Renn.
Officer Renn was shot and killed in the line of duty Saturday night. He is survived by his wife.
Officer Renn’s squad car was converted into a memorial on Sunday outside IMPD’s North District Headquarters, giving people a chance to honor him and the vehicle neighbors said he adamantly took care of.
Those close to Renn’s family said his loved ones couldn’t be more thankful of the support the community has given them.
- Photos | Community mourns IMPD Officer Renn
It was a lesson of respect and honor that Michael Marine made sure his son learned today when he had him pose alongside fallen Officer Renn’s squad car.
“This officer stood in the gap for us on a daily basis. He didn’t have to, but he did,” he said.
Many people like Marine brought their children along for the same reason. Others just wanted a moment to reflect and say thank you.
“They’re just amazed that people thought that much that they would come by and drop things off,” said Sabrina Young, neighbor and close family friend to the Renn’s. She spoke on their behalf in a news conference on Sunday night.
“His wife is a strong person and she’s obviously devastated but she’s doing as well, as likely as can be expected,” Young said.
Young said Renn and his wife loved their dogs, were avid bike riders, and were quick to help out around the neighborhood. She said Renn spent much of this winter snowblowing neighbors’ driveways and dragging their garbage cans to the curb without anyone asking.
But, she said, Renn’s passion was always protecting his community, no matter how dangerous the job became.
“Are you ever going to go and be a supervisor? You ever going to, you know, move up the ranks?” she said she would often ask him. “He said ‘I’m a patrol officer and that’s what I always want to be.'”
Young was emotional at times during the news conference, especially when asked about how the community can move on after losing another IMPD officer in the line of duty in the past year.
“When they’re beat up and they’re shot at and everything, and then killed like Perry and the other officers that have died, it puts a hole in our community that can never be filled. And we’ve got to figure out how to fix this,” she said.
Young said Renn and his wife had a lot to look forward to this year. They had planned a biking trip in Idaho and this September would have been their 25th wedding anniversary.
Although they didn’t have kids, Young said their dogs were treated like their children.
Family is saying if anyone would like to make donations in Renn’s name, they can do so towards the Best Friends Animal Society. It’s a non-profit that focuses on saving the lives of homeless pets.