ST. PAUL, Minn. - It is as if Josh Lynaugh was destined to wear blue, and protect the residents of the city where he grew from a child into a man and honored officer.
Hundreds climbed the steps of the Cathedral of St. Paul Friday morning to mark the memory and honor the life of Lynaugh, who diedof a heart attack last week after chasing a suspect on foot.
The proceedings began with Lynaugh's police academy graduating class escorting his casket into the cathedral, where more than 800 fellow officers, family members and friends had gathered.
During the funeralservice it was shared that as a child Josh Lynaugh once wrote in a school essay, "I want to be a cop like my pop." It was a reference and tribute to his father Tim Lynaugh, a retired St. Paul police sergeant.
He followedhis childhood dreams and became a sworn officer, who was decorated for his service.
Josh Lynaugh was president of his police academy class, which graduated in December of 2007.
Friend and fellow officer Lou Ferraro said Josh's father was his hero and his role model. "He wanted to follow in his footsteps."
Ferraro described Lynaugh as kind and giving. "He would buy dinner for people he had never met before," Ferraro related, and once paid the vet bill for a dog that had been injured on the east side of St. Paul out of his own pocket.
Josh was remembered as a standout football player at Stillwater High School, and worked as a corrections officer at Stillwater State Prison before entering the St. Paul Police Academy.
St. Paul Police Chief Tom Smith promised that he and his fellow officers will keep Josh's Legacy alive.
Following thefuneral a procession wound its way to a cemetery in Stillwater, where Josh Lynaugh will lay in rest.