Slain MCSO Deputy William Coleman laid to rest

PHOENIX - Funeral services were held Friday for a Maricopa County sheriff's deputy who was fatally shot when responding to a burglary call.

Investigators say Deputy William Coleman was killed on Sunday by a man who days earlier had fatally shot a New Hampshire couple near Sedona.

The sheriff's office says the gunman was killed during an exchange of gunfire with sheriff's deputies.

The 50-year-old Coleman, assigned as a patrol deputy, was a 20-year veteran of the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office.

He is survived by a wife and two young children, ages 4 and 7. Coleman also has grown children in another state.

Hundreds of people on Friday visited the North Phoenix Baptist Church to pay their last respects to Coleman.

While somber, the service was also uplifting, as friends, family and fellow law enforcement officers shared their memories about a man they loved so dearly.  

"We are gathered here today, in memory of a man of honor," said Pastor Dan Yeary.

He was also a beloved brother, husband, father and friend.

Coleman's sister Julie, who lived next door to her younger brother, described a man with a great sense of humor.

She said Coleman loved his family, volunteering at his son's school and simply having fun.

"He's looking down on us now, saying, ‘Geez people, get past this and let's have a beer!'" she said.

Coleman's oldest son, Joe, took the podium, where he remembered his dad as an extraordinary father.

"Here's to you dad," he tearfully said. "Get some sleep, would ya!"

The strong sense of love and sorrow from Coleman's family is matched by those who worked with him.

"Bill, you made a difference in people's lives," cried one of his former colleagues. "And, you just thought it was another day at work. God bless you my friend. You will never be forgotten."

Following a procession, Coleman was taken to his final resting place at Phoenix Memorial Cemetery.

The Ocho Locos restaurant in Anthem will hold a fundraiser for Deputy Coleman on Monday, located at 3655 W. Anthem Way.

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