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East County Wednesday, Feb. 12, 2020 2 weeks ago

Public encouraged to attend funeral of fallen state trooper on Thursday in Lakewood Ranch

The Florida Highway Patrol also says the public can honor Joseph Bullock, who was shot and killed Feb. 5 in Martin County, by lining the procession route.
by: Jay Heater Managing Editor

The funeral service for Trooper Joseph Bullock, who was shot and killed Feb. 5 while responding to a disabled vehicle along Interstate 95 in Martin County, is scheduled to begin at 11 a.m. at Bayside Community Church in Lakewood Ranch.

A procession of Florida Highway Patrol officers will accompany Bullock's body from the Robert Toale and Sons Funeral Home in Sarasota to Bayside Community Church. The procession departs the funeral home at 8:45 a.m.

Following the service, a procession of law enforcement agencies and other first responders will leave the church and head for Sarasota National Cemetery, the site of burial. An honor guard flag presentation, a 21-gun salute, a flyover and last call will be conducted. The service at the cemetery is expected to begin at approximately 2:30 p.m.

Bayside Pastor Randy Bezet will welcome the public at the church ceremony and Trooper George Smyrnios, a minister, will officiate. Col. Gene Spaulding of the Florida Highway Patrol will offer opening remarks while some of Bullock's fellow troopers will add personal reflections.

The procession to the church through East County is planned to come down State Road 70 before turning left on Lorraine Road and into an entrance to Bayside. The procession from the church to the cemetery, expected to leave the church at approximately 12:30 p.m., is scheduled to proceed through East County down Lorraine Road south, then west on University Parkway and then south on Interstate 75.

The public is encouraged to show respect by lining the procession route in areas where it is safe to do so. The auditorium at Bayside Community Church seats 4,000 people and the public again is encouraged to attend the service.

Bullock, who was 42, was born in Warren, Pa., and was a graduate of Lemon Bay High School in Charlotte County. The Air Force veteran began his career with the Florida Highway Patrol in 2001. His parents, Jon and Val Bullock, are Englewood residents.

Bullock was killed by Franklin Reed III, 28, of Palm Bay. Reed was shot and killed on the scene by a Riviera Beach police officer who was driving past the scene and saw what took place.


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