PHOENIX (FOX 10) - Dozens lined up today to remember Officer Paul Rutherford - his watch ending too soon last week.
"You would never know the amount of love and compassion he had inside of him just by talking to him," one officer said.
The veteran police officer was a beloved member of the department whose work ethic was second to none, according to his precinct commander.
Rutherford was a patrol officer for 23 years - a rare occurrence, but a job he did passion and empathy. For those who know his work ethic -- unreplaceable.
"You don't replace him," said Sgt. Tommy Thompson with the Phoenix Police Department. "But what you do is you build upon the legacy that he established -- hardworking."
"As long as I've known him, he constantly had a passion for his job," said Commander Ed DeCastro, Rutherford's precinct commander. He'd go home and talk about all the things he did, the calls he went on, and he just wanted to do a good job. He was one of the hardest workers we had.
Rutherford leaves behind a wife and two kids of his own, and a grandson. His other family -- the other men and women in uniform -- are taking the loss just as hard.
"The patrol officer is the one who arrives on [the] scene and turns chaos into calm," said Sgt. Thompson. "and for 23 years, that's what Paul Rutherford did."