MENTOR, Ohio -- The community paid its respects to fallen Mentor Officer Mathew Mazany on Monday.
Mazany, 41, was helping with a traffic stop on Route 2 on June 24 when he was hit by a car. The driver left the scene and was arrested later that day.
The day of remembrance started with a small service for family members and the law enforcement community.
After the private service, a police escort led the procession from Monreal Funeral Home to the Mentor High School Fine Arts Center for the public service. Mentor officers were joined by police from across the state as residents lined the streets with flags.
During the service, Sgt. Scott Tkach described Mazany as an old-school cop, a no-nonsense man who loved classic rock music.
"If there's two words I would use to describe Mat, it would be genuine and unique," Tkach said. The retired sergeant fought back tears as he told stories of Mazany's time on the force.
"To Mat's family, thank you for sharing Mat with us. He was destined to be a cop. We're so fortunate that he chose Mentor. Mentor was a safer place and Mentor PD was a better place because of Mat," Tkach said. "To my MDP family, I hope it gives you some comfort knowing Mat loved being a cop and he loved being a cop with you. I'm sure he never told you that, but you know it now. Those aren't my words, he gave them to me a year ago."
Mazany's older brother, Mike Mazany, told mourners about how he begged his parents for a brother as a child. He loved pushing his baby brother around in the stroller and showing him off to the neighbors. Mike joked Mat laid him off from his first job: cranking the pasta machine for his mother.
"To the community of Mentor, I have not been able to go anywhere without seeing a sign or a message on any building. This has touched me deeply, in a way I cannot begin thank you guys for. In a way, you're a lot like a 6-year-old me, in that you couldn't wait to tell anyone how proud you are of your Officer Mat," Mike Mazany said.
Mazany served the Mentor Police Department for 14 years. He leaves behind his wife of 22 years, Lisa, and his son, Mathew.
Donations to the Mathew Mazany Memorial Fund can be made at any Fifth Third Bank branch.