CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The Charlotte community said a final goodbye Wednesday to a Charlotte-Mecklenburg police officer who was killed while responding to a crash on Interstate 85.
Officer Mia Goodwin died Dec. 22, just days after returning from maternity leave and days before Christmas.
Police said a semi-truck with a trailer collided with another semi (cab only) heading southbound, and that collision then caused them to crash into CMPD units who were working another accident scene. Goodwin, 33, was killed and three other
CMPD said it has charged one of the truck drivers, 50-year-old Daniel Leon Morgan, for his involvement in the deadly crash.
Since the tragic collision, Channel 9 has seen an outpouring of support for Goodwin’s husband and three children.
Visitation and a funeral service were set for Wednesday at First Baptist Church on South Davidson Street. Visitation started at 10 a.m., followed by a funeral at noon, and was open to the public.
>>For information on how you can help the family of Officer Mia Goodwin, click here.
Channel 9′s Gina Esposito saw dozens of law enforcement agencies participating in the miles-long procession that brought Officer Goodwin’s body to the church where her funeral was held. The hearse was followed by Goodwin’s family and Engine 5, from the fire station where Goodwin’s husband works.
Multiple police and fire departments were part of the escort as well as several law enforcement officers from all over the state.
CMPD officers at First Baptist Church held a moment of silence for the arrival of Goodwin’s escort.
(PHOTOS: Procession escorts CMPD Officer Mia Goodwin to her funeral)
‘We have an angel in the sky protecting us’
Hundreds of people attended Officer Goodwin’s visitation afterward. Those visitors included William Diaz, a fire captain in New Jersey who works with Mia Goodwin’s father -- who is also a firefighter.
Diaz said he had known Goodwin since she was a little girl. He saw her family Wednesday and had no words to express his sorrow.
“I actually started crying. I couldn’t say nothing. What do you say? No words,” Diaz said. “We lost a good one, but we have an angle in the sky protecting us.”
Diaz was also part of the procession for Goodwin.
“Officer Mia Goodwin, your watch may have ended on Dec. 22, 2021, but your mission carries on,” CMPD Chief Johnny Jennings said at the funeral inside First Baptist Church. “You can rest easy now.”
At her funeral, those who knew Officer Goodwin spoke about her intense love for her husband, her three children and her job.
“Brent, you were her everything,” said Raleigh Police Chief Estella Patterson. “She loved you so much and was always about you. Her love and her devotion to you and your family were unmistakable.”
Officer Goodwin’s father thanked everyone for embracing his daughter as part of the community.
“From my family, to you all, thank you, thank you for accepting my daughter into your community,” he said. “A northern child from the state of New Jersey, who knew no one here. But yet, she’s inspired and touched the community that she learned to love.”
(WATCH BELOW: CMPD Officer Mia Goodwin honored with procession, memorial; here’s how you can help)
©2021 Cox Media Group