Hundreds gather to honor life of Lemoore police officer Jonathan Diaz

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Pews of uniformed officers, along with family and friends, reminisced Friday about the officer who went above and beyond. He was named Officer of the Year in 2018.

"To say Officer Diaz was a proactive officer would be an understatement."

Lemoore Police Chief Michael Kendall said Diaz came to work with a good attitude and signature smirk.

He was an overachiever from day one, going from a reserve to officer in just five months.

Reverend Michael Moore led mass Friday, which was also in Spanish. He encouraged everyone to live like Jonathan -- with guiding principles.

"I hope that when we consider today's occasion, we consider what Jonathan did," Moore said. "We really strive to be people that within us, will do the right thing when something sudden and unexpected happens and we're called on."

Although just 31 years old, he was wise beyond his years. Investing in young people was a priority for him. He worked to investigate gang crimes while steering youth away from that lifestyle.

He even started a program for at-risk youth, taking them to prisons to see where a life of crime often ends up.

But even when Officer Diaz wasn't wearing his badge, Chief Kendall said he was a community servant. His final moments demonstrated that commitment, facing danger, and walking into the line of fire without a weapon or backup.

"As most of you know, he died after saving another person's life. We believe that he was attempting to save another life and made a conscious decision to go back inside the house while unarmed, and even after hearing at least one gunshot coming from within," Kendall said. "This was Jonathan Diaz."

As a beat cop, he was a busy one, usually leading his shift on proactive patrol checks, traffic stops and overall arrests.

At home, he was a father of three, and a beloved son who his family said was a great example and provider.

His sudden death has shaken many, but the Chief believes that Diaz died doing what he felt was right even when it wasn't easy.

"He would have done it again, had the same opportunity presented itself and knowing that there was even a small possibility he could save someone's life," Kendall said.

Although he's only been an officer for a handful of years, he's received countless awards

Including one for running into two burning homes while on-duty to make sure the people inside got out safely.

The services ended with a final logoff for Officer Diaz. He was then buried at Sunflower Cemetery in Lemoore.
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