Hundreds of people attended the funeral service for a 32-year-old Dickson County sergeant who was killed in the line-of-duty last week.
Sgt. Daniel Baker’s wife was escorted into First Baptist Church by Dickson Deputy Kenny Monzon just after 1 p.m.
Mourners and law enforcement from across the nation have paid their respects to the fallen sergeant over the last two days.
“I like the services that are a life celebration – they’re a lot more uplifting, but I just can’t get used to that when I’m hurting so bad at this time,” Sheriff Bledsoe said.
During the service, Sheriff Bledsoe retired badge No. 95 and patrol car No. 500 – both of which belonged to Sgt. Baker. He said neither number will be issued again in Dickson County.
“Rest in peace, Sgt. Daniel Baker. We will take it from here on your behalf,” Bledsoe said.
In addition to Sheriff Bledsoe speaking, several close friends and co-workers spoke about the man and hero Sgt. Baker most undoubtedly was.
“Daniel grew into the man you wanted him to be and the man we needed him to be,” said Springhill Police Detective Robert Carden.
Many spoke about the natural leader Sgt. Baker was and how he placed the needs of others before his own.
In the time of grief, there were also laughs shared as his best friend spoke about how he shaved Baker’s back before he went on his first date with his wife Lisa.
In a more serious tone, Sgt. Jeremy Etheridge went on to tell the crowd he would think of Baker every day until his own dying day.
Etheridge ended his brief eulogy by speaking directly to his close friend, saying, “If I die laughing, it’ll be your fault.”
Sgt. Baker leaves behind his wife, Lisa, and young daughter, Meredith.
“Daniel was most proud to be called a father. In the last two years, we have talked about that many times and what that means in his life,” said Dickson County Police Captain Donny Arnold.
Hundreds of law enforcement officers gathered outside the church to pay their respects as Sgt. Baker’s body was carried out of the church and placed into the black hearse.
Two Dickson County deputies drove the hearse to Sgt. Baker’s final resting place at Dickson County Memorial Gardens.
Hundreds of people gathered along the two-mile stretch to pay their respects as the hearse drove slowly past.
Sgt. Baker’s final call went out at the cemetery. In part, it said:
“Sgt. Baker gave himself while serving Dickson County with courage and valor. The men and women of the Dickson County Sheriff’s Office are forever grateful and proud to have served with Sgt. Baker. We will never forget his ultimate sacrifice. Sgt. Daniel Baker may you rest in peace knowing your strength lives on in your wife, your legacy will carry on to your daughter and you will forever be in our hearts. Sgt. Daniel Scott Baker, Badge 95, out of service for the remainder. Thank you for your service, rest easy and we will take it from here.”
Baker’s family also placed white roses on the casket before 104 members of the Dickson County Sheriff’s Office placed blue carnations on his casket.
A special inscription was put on top of the vault, a gift to the family that was revealed at the burial site. Along with a large photo of Sgt. Baker on the job it had a bible quote. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. – Matthew 5:9
Doves were also released in his memory. There was also a 21-gun salute and a flyover.
Sgt. Baker’s wife was presented with the American flag that draped over her husband’s casket.