Hundreds pay respect to fallen officer - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Hundreds pay respect to fallen officer

Officer Mitch Prince Officer Mitch Prince
Darrell Maness in court Tuesday Darrell Maness in court Tuesday
Officer Prince with his family Officer Prince with his family

JANUARY 20, 2005 -- People who knew Mitch Prince say he loved his family and his job as a Boiling Spring Lakes Police Officer, but he also had a deep love for his favorite hobby, cooking. Early Tuesday morning, it was all taken away after a traffic stop.

19-year-old Darrell Maness is accused of killing Prince with his own weapon. Wednesday morning officials transferred Maness to a state prison in Butner, where he will remain until his next court hearing.

The fate of the accused killer was far from the minds of the people who gathered at the Coble-Ward Smith Funeral Home in Supply Wednesday night to pay their final respects to Officer Prince.

"He loved the police force and he was a fantastic person. I can't believe something like this would happen," said Barry Evans, a long time friend.

"He's someone that you'll never hear a bad story about. He was a man of God. He loved his family and his children," said Prince's friend Debbie Ernest.

"This is very rewarding, but hard when you know the family. I'm just proud to serve him, but I'm sorry that I have to," said funeral director Greg White, who is also a close friend of the Prince family.

White says a visitation and a funeral for a police officer requires special preparations. Prince will be carried in a horse drawn caisson. His fellow officers of the Boiling Spring Lakes Police Department will carry their fallen brother to his grave.

Officer Prince's funeral will be held Thursday at 1:00 pm at the Highest Praise Worship Center in Shallotte. He will be laid to rest immediately following the ceremony at Georgetown-Holden Cemetery on Stanley Road.

Click here to leave respects for the family and view pictures of Mitch Prince

Reported by Maggie Alexander

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