Cadets salute fallen Officer David Smith

By Brandi Bailey
By Anna Norris

April 2, 2014 Updated Apr 3, 2014 at 9:52 AM EDT

Johnson City, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Cadets currently enrolled in the Broome County Law Enforcement Academy were trained on how to salute, in order to show respect for fallen officer, David Smith.

"It is difficult to swallow and bit of a reality check. It's real, it's what we're doing, it's why we're here," said fellow Johnson City Police Officer, Katelyn Furman.

Furman stated that she knew the risks and responsibilities when she signed on to be a police officer, but admitted that this doesn't make the news of Officer Smith's tragic death any easier.

"It's a sense of shock more than anything for them. Until you see it first hand and actually realize the magnitude of it. Unfortunately, in the 20 years I've been on, I've been to too many funerals. Just to see the magnitude of how big these funerals are is heart-wrenching," said Furman.

Michael Hepler, Johnson City Police Department, explained how training had to be slightly altered to ensure that the cadets were ready to salute Officer Smith.

"We're learning about facing movements and how to make proper pivots when we are doing a column right or a column left and how to present arms," said Hepler.

Others on the force said that remembering Officer Smith will drive them even further to do the job.

Hepler stated, "It makes me want to do the job even more to protect people from people like that."

Officer Smith's tragic death is a reminder to all officers on duty that each call is different and any situation could turn dangerous.

"Sometimes you go on your day-to-day calls and you get it set in your head what that call is going to be before you get there. Huge mistake," said Hepler.

The law enforcement community will honor Officer Smith and his family at calling hours and funeral service on Thursday and Friday of this week.