Community gathers for vigil honoring fallen Phoenix officer - WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Louisiana News, Weather, Sports

Community gathers for vigil honoring fallen Phoenix officer

PHOENIX (CBS5) -
Police officers, first responders, neighbors and total strangers came to 43rd Avenue and Bethany Home to pay their respects Wednesday night. Just a few days ago, it was just another intersection. But now, balloons, flowers and signs now mark a place of tragedy that won't be soon forgotten. 

"This can happen all over Phoenix," said Lawrrie Fitzhugh, who has lived in the neighborhood since 1990. "This Monday, it happened here."

Fitzhugh said she had to do something to commemorate Detective John Hobbs' sacrifice. 

"Here these officers protecting us were wounded and one fatally, and I felt like we needed to respond and show support," she said. She and her neighbors organized the vigil Wednesday night to show their gratitude and grieve. Some members of law enforcement stopped by to drop off flowers.

"Every day of their life, they go out there, and they don't know the end result of what will happen to them that day," said neighbor Ginny Dutson.

After the national anthem and a short prayer, people stood, reflected and thanked the officers for their service. 

"It's humbling for us, and we can't say enough how much we appreciate it as officers when the public comes out like this," said Lt. Ben Leuschner. He said Hobbs was their go-to guy, but more importantly, was a humble family man whose absence is now deeply felt. 

"We all miss him, terribly," Leuschner said.

"One lost his life doing it, and I deeply appreciate that," Fitzhugh said.

Copyright 2014 CBS 5 (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved. 

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