By Jamie Leary
HIGHLANDS RANCH, Colo. (CBS4)– All who spoke at the funeral of fallen Douglas County Deputy Zackari Parrish talked about his faith in God. Family and friends are still in shock but say it is their faith and Zack’s strong faith keeping them afloat.
“Father, this is the hardest thing I have ever had to do,” Parrish’s father, Zack Parrish cried as he bowed his head to pray. “He was called to serve and he loved his job… the most important part of his life was his faith.”
“I rest in the fact that Zack gave his life responding to God’s call,” said Colorado State Trooper Troy Kessler, Parrish’s best friend.
Parrish, 29, was killed in the line of duty during a shooting Sunday morning that injured three other deputies, a police officer, and two civilians.
Douglas County Sheriff Tony Spurlock recalled the morning Zack was killed. He told the packed church that he watched the body camera footage and said even in the moments before his death, Zack was a model officer.
“Never once did I hear Zack Parrish use a foul word, never once did I hear him raise his voice, never once did I hear him be derogatory to this individual, not one time,” said Spurlock. “And up into the moments that Deputy Zack Parrish died, he was pleading with the man, begging him ‘Let me talk to you, Let me help you please.’”
Spurlock wished he could have 100 officers like Zack and was convinced if he did, Zack’s former boss, Castle Rock Chief of Police Jack Cauley, would want at least 50 of them. Zack was an officer with the Castle Rock Police Department for more than two years before he transferred to the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office.
“When we lost Zack, we lost a role model police officer,” said Cauley. “Zack my brother, rest in peace.”
“I, too, will be like Zack Parrish. Deputy Parrish, God bless you. May God bless you and keep you and forever rest in peace,” said Spurlock.
Jamie Leary joined the CBS4 team in 2015 and currently works as a reporter for CBS4 News at 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. She couldn’t imagine a better place to live and work and will stop at nothing to find the next great story. Jamie loves learning about and hearing from her fellow community members, so connect with her on Facebook or Twitter @JamieALeary.