It was an emotional day at the Cleveland Police Department on Thursday where they retired the badge number of fallen police officer Dave Fahey, who was killed in January in the line of duty.
“There’s always going to be a piece of him in the city that’s his and his alone and no one could ever have that again,” said his brother, Officer Christopher Porter, who also serves on the department.
Porter is Fahey’s youngest brother and was the first family member to get the call on that early January morning that Fahey was struck by a hit-and-run driver.
Fahey had been directing traffic along I-90 West, not far from where his father died helping a friend change a tire nearly four decades ago.
Officer Porter said he always understood the dangers of the job, yet his brother’s death still came as a shock.
“You think you’re more prepared but you’re not,” he said. “When it happens to you, you’re not.”
Officer Fahey was a graduate of St. Edward High School, a Navy veteran, and a beloved son. Just 39-years old, he still had big dreams.
The man who struck him had a history of drug abuse and was later arrested.
Throughout this Police Week, Officer Fahey has been regularly honored. His name was etched into the Fallen Officers Memorial, and his locker was repainted in black paint.
Many remember him most by his infectious smile.
“No matter how bad things got, it was just his smile,” said his brother. “We will never forget that he just always smiled.”
Porter believes Fahey would have been proud to see so many people gathering out of love and respect since his death.
The support has also strengthened fellow officers.
“There’s something that we need to carry on,” Porter said, “And to it honorably for him.”