LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The family of fallen LMPD officer Nick Rodman held a procession through Louisville on Saturday.

The route was designed by Rodman's family, according to the River City FOP, in an effort to pass many of the important places in his life. For example, the procession passed his boyhood home and his high school, Holy Cross.

Law enforcement officers from across Kentuckiana saluted officer Rodman's flag-draped casket before taking the 30-year-old on one final ride around the city. 

Strangers holding the American flag lined 3rd Street as the hearse rolled by. 

"He gave up his life to protect us. It's just sad. Really a sad day," Tammy McDonald said. 

Drivers honked in support as the procession snaked its way through Louisville, eventually taking Rodman down Dixie Highway to Holy Cross High School where he played football. 

Kevin Nauert knew the husband and father well. 

"My brother played football with him. It's tough, it's tough for the whole community," Nauert said. 

Friends, extended family and perfect strangers broke out banners, while players, both current and former held up Rodman's old number 45. 

"You couldn't help but smile anytime he was in the room," said art teacher and former drama coach, Mary Rose Weiter.

Then silence on the normally busy street as the procession passed. 

That silence replaced with weeping as Rodman's father jumped out of the hearse and into the arms of the football team. Former and current players huddling around the grieving father.

"My heart just breaks for them. He should just be starting life with those babies. His family. It's heartbreaking," McDonald said.

The sea of flashing blue lights wound its way onto the Watterson and I-65, before hitting Bardstown Road taking the fallen officer to the final leg of his journey home at the Arch L. Heady Funeral home.

A fitting tribute Saturday from those whose lives Nick Rodman touched and those touched by his life.

A candlelight vigil will be held Sunday at 7:45 p.m. to honor Officer Rodman at Jefferson Memorial Park at 6th Street and Jefferson Street. 

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