INDEPENDENCE, Mo. — A fallen Independence police officer will be laid to rest on Friday, with family, friends and the law enforcement community coming together to remember Officer Blaize Madrid-Evans, who was killed in the line of duty on Sept. 15.
Visitation was Thursday night, with the funeral scheduled at Community of Christ auditorium on Friday afternoon, and a procession leading Madrid-Evans to his final resting place at Mt. Washington Cemetery.
If you wish to pay your respect to the officer, you can line the streets with signs and flags to greet the funeral procession as they take Madrid-Evans to the cemetery.
Here’s the route they’re taking on Friday:
- The procession will leave the Community of Christ Auditorium and head east on West Walnut Street.
- From East Walnut Street, the route will turn north on South Memorial Drive .
- Then, the procession will drive west on East Truman Road.
- From East Truman Road, the route goes north on South Arlington Street into East Winner Road.
- Then, the procession will drive west on US 24 Hwy to South Brookside Avenue and then south, where the procession ends at the Mt. Washington Cemetery just south of the intersection.
Family, friends, and officers from all over came to Independence to offer their condolences to the family of Madrid-Evans on Thursday.
The visitation at the Community of Christ Church last night lasted several hours as many wanted to pay their respects. The 22-year-old had just graduated the police academy and was excited to serve and protect.
He had 18 shifts under his belt and was still in training when he lost his life in the line of duty. While checking a house last Wednesday after a report of a wanted man in the area, that suspect opened fire and killed Madrid-Evans.
His training officer returned fire and killed the suspect. This death rocked the Independence Police Department. They hadn’t lost an officer in the line of duty to gunfire since 2001.
The fact he died so young, and with so much potential, is why many are struggling with this loss.
“It’s a bad time for all of us at the department. I’m feeling mixed emotions. A really sad thing that came out of this for someone that’s 22 to lose their life with our department,” Officer Jack Taylor said.
The funeral starts at 11 a.m. Afterwards, Madrid-Evans’ casket will be placed in an ambulance and taken from the church past the Independence police station, and then on to the cemetery.
The public is invited to stand along the funeral procession route streets and hold signs or flags to show support for the young officer, his loved ones, and the law enforcement community.