CHICAGO (CBS)– More than 3,000 people showed respect for McHenry County Deputy Jacob Keltner at his funeral Wednesday. Keltner was shot and killed in the line of duty last week.
Becki Keltner said her husband loved his job and was a “cop’s cop.” The proof of that statement: officers from all over the country, including Chicago, New York and Boston, shuffled into Woodstock North High School for the services.
A week ago, Deputy Keltner was teaching baseball techniques to his sons. Wednesday, he was memorialized by his police family.
“There is no better fugitive investigator or task force officer in this nation than Jake,” retired McHenry County Sheriff’s Sgt. Tony Penna said.
“For six straight years, he never took a sick day,” Sheriff Bill Prim said.
On the job, he was a hard worker who earned a spot with U.S. Marshals Service Fugitive Task Force.
At home, he showed a softer side. Family friend Rev. Kendall Koenig called him “the baby whisperer,” adding that crying toddlers would “magically calm down in Jake’s lap.”
Officers and loved ones stood in silence outside the high school during Keltner’s end of watch call.
“Rest in peace brother,” the call said. “We will take it from here.”
American flags, thin blue lines and proud people lined the streets for the procession to the funeral home.
“I just believe that men and women that do jobs like that, to protect and serve people, deserve respect and honor,” onlooker Greg McQueen said.
He is remembered as a loving husband, a proud dad, and a dedicated protector.
“I’ll see you on the other side,” Penna said. “I love you.”
Keltner was a 35 years old. He worked with the McHenry County Sheriff’s Office for about 13 years.