Monday was an emotional day in Oregon as the community said goodbye to a long-time public servant.
Deputy Neil Minnis served in law enforcement in the area for the past 42 years. He passed away suddenly on July 22nd at SwedishAmerican Hospital at the age of 63.
Friends, family, and law enforcement from all over the area gathered to pay their respect and say their final goodbyes at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Oregon on Monday.
His wife Robin, who he married on September 13th, 1986 said, "He was one of a kind. He was one of the good guys. Protect and serve is what police officers are all about and he lived it to a tee."
A day spent honoring a deputy left many colleagues, whom Minnis worked with, reflecting on his character. Lt. Jim Getzelman worked with Minnis for over 25 years. Getzelman said Minnis was a man who would give the shirt off his back for anyone. "A man with values. A man who lived those values," said Getzelman.
As hundreds came to honor the life of Minnis, they not only said thank you but the community showed their thanks. A police procession followed the memorial service as friends and colleagues lined the streets to salute the long-time deputy as he was escorted on his final ride home.
Reflecting on the scene, Minnis' son Nathaniel Minnis said, "No one could ever plan for this day. It's just incredible to know that the respect and the brotherhood is there."
Minnis was a man with a heart for people as described by his wife. Robin Minnis said, "He loved his job. He loved helping people. He just couldn't pass up a chance to help people."
"He's going to be remembered forever," said his son Nathaniel."We just hope that everyone can take what he taught them, pay it forward and live their lives just like he did."
Minnis was laid to rest at Riverview Cemetery in Oregon. He leaves behind his wife, his three children and multiple grandchildren.