Officer Robert McKeithen laid to rest at Biloxi National Cemetery
After 24 years of service, Officer McKeithen is in his final resting place. People from across the state gathered at the Biloxi National Cemetery to pay respect to the fallen officer.
Biloxi resident William Hill said, “The men in blue go to war every day. They don’t know who the enemy is. That’s what happened to this man.”
Hearts were heavy as thousands of people gathered to say their final goodbyes to Biloxi Police Officer Robert McKeithen. “He went to the job that day expecting to go home to mom, wife, kids, and that didn’t happen.”
During Officer McKeithen’s burial ceremony, the Biloxi Police Honor Guard performed a 21 gun salute as well as the folding of the American flag draped over McKeithen’s casket and the playing of ‘Taps.’
Gateway United Methodist Church Reverend Beth Matthews says though tragic in its loss of life, this situation is her chance to show the community her support of local law enforcement. “We pray for our first responders every Sunday and this is an opportunity to show our respect, to let his family know that we support them, to let the other officers know that we support them. They rush in when we’re running away. They give their life for us and this is the perfect example of that. It’s tragic but it’s a chance to show our love.”
There wasn’t one dry eye when dispatch did the final roll call for Officer McKeithen.
Hill says he hopes through this tragedy law enforcement will finally gain the appreciation they deserve for the daily sacrifice made to keep communities safe. “Take a breath, think about what you have to live for, think what Robert had to live for, think about those men and women in blue, what they have, the respect that they needed, the respect that they deserve give it to them.”