MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – There were heavy hearts Friday in Brooklyn Park as friends and family remembered Detective Kevin Hegyi, a Hopkins police officer.
The 45-year-old father of three died after he was hit by an SUV while riding his bicycle early Sunday morning.
Authorities say Hegyi was struck by a vehicle around 12:14 a.m. in the 22600 block of Industrial Boulevard. Hegyi was pronounced dead at the scene just after 1 a.m. According to investigators, both Hegyi and the driver of the vehicle were traveling in the westbound lane of Industrial Boulevard when the crash occurred. The driver is cooperating with the investigation.
On Friday, Hegyi’s family and officers from law enforcement agencies across the state turned out to celebrate his life.
“It’s just odd when you realize, ‘I’m never going to talk to him again,'” said Sgt. Mike Glassberg with Hopkins police.
Sgt. Glassberg was one of the first to arrive at Grace Fellowship Lutheran Church Friday morning, but it wasn’t long before officers from across the state joined him.
“He’s just one of those guys when he walks in the room you feel at ease and comfortable with him,” Sgt. Glassberg said.
Glassberg remembers Hegyi as a fun-loving, active guy with a sense of humor. He said Hegyi worked in the construction business before making a career change to law enforcement, and his colleagues said he could fit in with anyone, anywhere.
A 7-year member of the force, he was a SWAT team leader and his remains were escorted to the church by fellow officers. Each of Detective Hegyi’s sons carried his urn, his badge and an American flag.
“Over and above, he taught us how to be a good dad. His passion for his boys, I don’t know if I’ve seen that in a father, at least from people I know,” Glassberg said.
During the service, people held blue roses. Afterward, Detective Hegyi was taken to his final resting place at Mound Cemetery in Brooklyn Center.
“It seems like a huge focus of Kevin’s wishes were that his sons be looked after,” Shannon Pedersen said.
Pedersen is part of an organization called “Backing the Blue Line.” They’ve started a fund to help Hegyi’s three sons with college and other expenses.
“It’s pretty cliché when people say this, but he was an all-around great guy,” Pedersen said.