Thousands gathered Saturday afternoon at Reed Arena on the campus of Texas A&M University for the funeral of Brian Bachmann, the constable shot and killed August 13.
Law enforcement officers from across the state and beyond were on hand to pay their respects to the Bachmann family and to participate in a procession from Reed to Memorial Funeral Home in College Station.
Bachmann was killed Monday afternoon as he was delivering an eviction notice to a resident on Fidelity Street in College Station. The suspect also shot and killed an innocent bystander, Christopher Northcliffe, who was remembered at a funeral Saturday. Others were wounded before the suspect was shot and killed by police.
Among those speaking at the Bachmann funeral were Congressman Bill Flores, State Senator Steve Ogden and Brazos County Sheriff Chris Kirk.
“Brian was a good person, a great father, a caring and compassionate man, a good friend and a good peace officer and he was a model public servant,” said Brazos County Sheriff Chris Kirk.
“He was an always smiling guy who could care less about anyone's title. He was a person that loved this community,” added Flores. “Brian and I always picked up where we left off. We were both volunteers at the Food bank’s Feast of Caring and we would always start out by teasing each other. He said, ‘Flores you must not be a good politician because here you are running again.’ And I said, ‘Oh really Bachmann, you’re the reason we need term limits [laughs]. And after that, we continued cleaning tables and serving food. And I just never appreciated the fact that that would be the last time I’d talk to Brian Bachmann.”
Kirk called the funeral service "glorious," and considered it "a great honor" to serve with Constable Bachmann for years before Bachmann was elected to Precinct 1 in 2010. Kirk had talked at length with the 41-year-old about running for sheriff once Kirk's term, which he says is his last, is up.
"Brian had no chance to defend himself; He was prepared for eternity. He knew the lord and he was ready for the door to eternity to open and I will truly miss my good friend Brian. God Bless his soul," said Kirk.
Bachmann's parents, Brad and Carmen, also spoke. They told attendees that their son had said he wanted to be "the best cop in the world." Brad Bachmann said he thought he knew his son, but hearing in the past week about all the things the constable had done for others, Brad said he didn't know 90 percent of his son's good deeds.
Flags had been flown over the U.S. and Texas capitols in honor of Bachmann to be presented to family and colleagues.
More than one speaker talked about how Bachmann disliked writing tickets and delivering eviction notices, although he wasn't afraid to do it. Often times, the constable would give people money out of his own pocket to people in need.
The choir and church leaders from Christ United Methodist in College Station helped head up the service at Reed. Reverend Tommy Myrick said he was sure Bachmann would have helped the man he was evicting Monday, and would have been the first to forgive him for the shooting.
There were lighter moments highlighting Bachmann's sense of humor. Kirk relayed that his former deputy was hard on sheriff's vehicles, including his totaling of two, though Kirk quickly pointed out that the damage wasn't Bachmann's fault.
While the service was estimated earlier in the week as lasting an hour, the remembrance took a little more than two-and-a-half hours before.
“Each moment is a step taken each breath a page turned. Each day a mile marker passed; a mountain climbed. You are closer to home than you've ever been,” said Congressman Bill Flores. “Just like when my airline flight approaches Bryan/college Station each week, you’re appointed arrival will come and you'll descend the ramp and you'll enter the city. You'll see the faces waiting for you, you'll hear your name spoken by the ones who love you and in the back behind the anxious crowd, the one who would rather die than live without you will remove his pierced hands from his heavenly robe and he will applaud your arrival.”