Memorial forms as community remembers officer David Smith

By Matt Porter

April 1, 2014 Updated Apr 1, 2014 at 5:37 PM EST

Johnson City, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Flowers and a flag mark the spot where Johnson City Police Officer David Smith fought his final battle to serve his community.

With the shooter also dead, mourners visiting the makeshift memorial say all that's left is to pray for the family.

"You can't pray for justice as that's absolutely not meaningful in this case," said Luther Chergosky, a volunteer at UHS Wilson Hospital. "You've got to pray for peace for the families."

Eddyson Gerville, of Binghamton, stopped and noticed the bouquets of flowers laid on the spot where Smith was shot.

He stood grappling how a police officer could be gunned down steps away from the hospital.

"When I heard of it, I couldn't believe it," Gerville said. "Right here, right in front of the hospital and stuff."

At the village hall where Smith was a regular, Johnson City Mayor Greg Deemie said village employees knew him as a friend.

"They all knew D.W.," Deemie said. "He was a great guy. He was one of those guys when once you meet him, it seemed like you were his friend automatically. He always had a smile on his face."

A village now in shock knowing it won't see him and his smiling face ever again.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with the family. Everybody at the village is mourning this loss deeply, very deeply," Deemie said.

The village and village police officers are hosting a candlelight vigil at the Johnson City Police Station on Avenue C at 7:30 p.m.