INDIANAPOLIS - Indiana State Troopers and deputies filled in for the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department on Thursday so local officers could mourn the loss of one of their own.
On the solemn day when IMPD Officer Rod Bradway was laid to rest, law enforcement didn’t stop in Indianapolis.
State troopers like Mike Meinczinger took on the role of an IMPD officer, with the fatal shooting still fresh on his mind.
"It affects you,” he said. "Hits close to home because we're all doing the same job."
Meinczinger, a 14-year veteran of the Indiana State Police, worked a 12-hour shift patrolling the city streets instead of his usual interstate patrol.
"We gotta step up and allow the ones that need to grieve, to allow them to grieve, to have their time with the IMPD family to allow them to get through this situation together," Meinczinger said.
Filling in as an IMPD officer was just one way that Meinczinger supported his law enforcement brethren.
"Yesterday I did go to St. Mary's downtown, I did pray for their family and the IMPD family to help them get through this situation," he said.
Like Officer Bradway, who died in the line of duty, Trooper Meinczinger has a family. When he left for work Thursday to fill in for IMPD, his wife took notice.
"Now that she knows I'm covering one of their beats, she's now a little more nervous," Meinczinger said.
His wife was glad to know that her husband's shift was mostly uneventful -- an incident outside a shopping mall and a minor traffic situation with a stalled vehicle.
Although there were no dangerous situations Thursday, just like all others who wear a badge, the goal is always the same.
"I do what I can depending on what the situation is to make it home to see my family," Meinczinger said.
Trooper Meinczinger summed it up best when he said that no matter what happens, it is their responsibility to provide a service.
Follow Drew Smith on Twitter: @drewsmith1