An entire community paused today to pay tribute to a fallen deputy. Hillsborough CountyMaster Corporal Brian LaVigne, killed last week in the line of duty, was laid to rest.
LaVigne was posthumously promoted to sergeant this afternoon by Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister.
Thousands of fellow deputies and law enforcement officers from across the state and even across the country came to the Idlewild Baptist Church in Lutz to pay their respects.
LaVigne, 54, was killed in the line of duty last week. He was one shift away from retirement when a suspect rammed his cruiser in Brandon.
His daughter, Deputy Caitlin LaVigne, said she grew up watching her father serve and wanted to follow in his footsteps.
“I wanted to do what he did for people,” she described. “I wanted to make people feel like he made them feel. It’s just – there’s no word to describe how much of a good influence he was on people.”
During his funeral, LaVigne was remembered as a loving father, husband, and a cop’s cop. He spent 30 years in law enforcement and was a mentor to a lot of the folks at the sheriff’s office today.
His colleagues talked about his leadership and his ability to connect with them and help them better themselves.
After the funeral, LaVigne received a full honors presentation. A final call also went out over the radio before the ceremony came to a close.