Her comrades paid their respects to her one last time.
At a funeral for Marlene Rittmanic Friday, her spouse Lynn shared this daily conversation.
Bradley Illinois Police Sergeant Marlene Rittmanic, age 49, died in the line of duty begging for her life while staring down the barrel of a gun nine days ago in a hotel hallway. A man and woman have been arrested in the murder. There is bitterness in her best friend Lynn’s voice.
Sharing similar thoughts was police chaplain, the Reverend Tim Perry.
There is a connection to our area. She is the sister of James (Trish) Rittmanic of Oswego and Colleen Welch of Plainfield. Her father James lives in Naperville.
Following the funeral, state highways 102 and 52 were closed down, snow plows blocking the road crossings on the 27 mile route. People lined the countryside funeral route waiting two hours in the freezing cold, many with US flags, honoring Rittmanic and all police officers in the procession.
Rittmanic believed in community policing, trying to understand people’s true needs, and finding the least disruptive solution. Bradley Police Chief Don Barber offered these words.
Barber had Rittmanic’s spouse Lynn stand and turn to see the large crowd of police officers from southern Illinois Jackson County to tiny Hebron on the north also from west to east, Moline to Charleston. He called them the brothers and sisters she never knew she had but now they have her back.
Nearly 100 law enforcement departments joined the tribute procession, including Oswego, Aurora, Plainfield, and Minooka while county sheriff departments from DeKalb, Kendall, and Kane counties showed their respects.
Bradley is only 54 miles from Kendall County. But the support and love by law enforcement honoring Rittmanic stretched for miles.
Here is the complete funeral for Bradley Polie Sgt. Marlene Rittmanic.
You can listen to Mark Harrington’s radio story by clicking below: