DRESSED in full police uniform and standing shoulder-to-shoulder they said an emotional goodbye to one of their own.
More than 70 Hampshire police officers attended the funeral of PC Rich Phillips-Schofield – and vowed to keep his memory alive.
The 33-year-old, a passionate cyclist, died on March 11, 48 hours after coming off his race bike during a British Cycling event in which he was competing at the Mountbatten Centre, Portsmouth.
PC Rich Phillips-Schofield was a keen cyclist
Yesterday he was laid to rest following an emotional service in his home town of Soli-hull in Birmingham.
Scores of officers, including Chief Constable Andy Marsh, made the journey to the Midlands to pay their respects to the popular officer, who worked at Bitterne Police Station and Portswood Police Station.
A Hampshire Constabulary flag was draped over his coffin, which was carried by some of his distraught colleagues.
There was standing room only in the church as hundreds packed in to hear emotional tributes to a man described as a “first class” police officer.
John Apter, chairman of Hampshire Police Federation, said PC Phillips-Schofield’s family had been comforted by the number of uniformed officers who attended.
Mr Apter said: “I have said it before but the service is a family and it is important that Richard’s family know they are part of our policing family. We are there for them and we will make sure Rich’s memory lives on.”
A spokesman for Hamp-shire Constabulary said: “Today also marks one year to the day since we lost PC Steve Rawson, who was tragically killed in a motorcycle collision whilst on duty in Southampton. Both officers will forever be greatly missed and remembered by all who knew them. The force is a poorer place for their loss.”