LUMBERTON — Eleven days after Chief Mike McNeill’s 30-year anniversary with the Lumberton Police Department, he will have the task of burying one of his own.
Master Police Officer Jeremiah Goodson will be buried on Tuesday at Gardens of Faith Cemetery at 5190 Fayetteville Road — exactly one mile from the service station where the off-duty 32-year-old officer was shot and killed three days ago.
“I would’ve never thought that I’d be going through anything like this,” McNeill said. “But God knows what he is doing.”
The slain officer’s body will be carried to a grave site by a horse-drawn wagon, McNeill said. The wagon, provided by the state Highway Patrol, will leave directly from the funeral, which begins at the Lumberton Senior High gymnasium at 11 a.m.
“It’s going to be huge,” McNeill said. “We’ll have people from everywhere — from the East, the West, North, South, and all points in between.”
The viewing, which will be held Monday at Colvin Funeral Home at 1904 E. Elizabethtown Road from 3 to 5 p.m., is also open to the public, McNeill said. A wake will follow in the Lumberton High School gym from 6 to 8 p.m.
Goodson is survived by his wife Lametria, who is due to have the couple’s second child any day now. A memorial fund has been established for his surviving family at State Employees Credit Union. Donations can be made either the 4840 Fayetteville Road or the 2739 W. Fifth St. locations. A second fund had been established, but they have now been combined.
McNeill said details about the funeral are still being worked out, and that “he couldn’t even begin to estimate” the number of people who would attend. He said law enforcement agencies that have confirmed their attendance were “too many to name.”
Goodson was shot and killed Tuesday while attempting to serve a warrant on 27-year-old Marques Brown. As Goodson approached Brown’s vehicle, Brown began firing, hitting Goodson more than once, authorities say. Brown has been charged with first-degree murder.
A Facebook group created in Goodson’s memory, “Rest In Peace ~~ Jeremiah Goodson,” had more than 800 members early today. Many tributes have also been posted on The Robesonian’s website. More than 300 condolences for Goodson’s family can also be found at odmp.org, where memorials are posted for fallen officers.
Goodson had been employed with the Lumberton Police Department since June 14, 2006. He drove patrol car No. 45.