WESTERVILLE, Ohio (WSYX/WTTE) -- Two days after two Westerville police officers were killed in the line of duty, their families released a joint statement, remembering their fallen loved ones and expressing gratitude for the support from others through their difficult time.
Officers Anthony Morelli and Eric Joering were shot and killed responding to a "possible domestic situation" Saturday morning when police said they were ambushed by Quentin Lamar Smith. Officer Joering died at the scene. Officer Morelli was transported to OSU Wexner Medical Center where he later died from his injuries.
We’re very thankful for our family, friends and the Westerville community. We feel loved and blessed, and we are appreciative of the outpouring of support. We have seen and heard so much from people who have shared stories about how our men impacted their lives. They will be so greatly missed, not only by us, but by everyone they touched.
Our men were dedicated officers for certain, but we knew them as dedicated fathers and husbands. When they were home, they were home. They left work at work. We are so sad that Eric will not see his three daughters graduate from high school. We’re devastated Tony will not be able to walk his daughter down the aisle at her wedding.
We want to thank the Westerville Division of Police, the Columbus Division of Police and all the police agencies in Central Ohio who have helped and supported us. We are thankful for the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 9 and The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center. We know we’re not going to remember everyone right now, but we want to express our gratitude for the kindness and generosity we have been shown.
We are requesting our privacy to mourn our lost husbands and fathers. We need time to heal. We will be granting no interviews at this time.
A dual funeral will be held for both officers at St. Paul Catholic Church on Friday.