BURLESON COUNTY, Texas -- Around 1,200 attended the funeral for Deputy Sgt. Adam Sowders Friday afternoon. He was shot while helping to serve an arrest warrant last Friday in Somerville, about 90 miles east of Austin.
"It's a hard day," said Burleson County Sheriff's Corporal Mark Koch. "It's been an honor seeing everybody come in and support us and help us."
Koch worked alongside Sowders for two years.
"Everybody loved Adam. He was strong he'd do anything in the world for you and for his community," Koch said.
Last week, Sowders and other deputies served a warrant at a home in rural Somerville. That's when police say Henry Magee shot and killed him.
"Speechless. You don't know what to think," Koch said. "You wish you could go back and change time, but he was doing what he loved, and I'm proud of him. And I'm honored to be here today."
"He paid the ultimate sacrifice," said Austin Police Lt. Robert Richman.
Richman was one of many officers who traveled to pay their respects.
"When someone is killed in the line of duty, when they're murdered like that, we want to make sure we honor a fallen brother," Richman said.
Though they've never met in person, he considers Sowders family.
"It's for our community, to become part of something bigger than yourself, to be able to help people in our community, to make sure that the community we have is safe and free," Richman said.
Sowders' career in public safety spanned more than a decade. He started with the Somerville Fire Department at 18 years old, then served with the town's police department. He started with the Burleson County Sheriff's Office in 2006 and recently earned a promotion to sergeant.
"It's a great amount of sadness, you know, thinking about our own families," Richman said. "But also a tremendous amount of pride when someone is willing to put their lives on the line for their community and have the ultimate sacrifice when they do."
"It's part of us and it's who we are and what we love, and it's what we're going to do. It's just, you know, our job," Koch said.
Henry Magee is charged with capital murder of a peace officer. Details of the search warrant have not been released. Magee's attorney said he acted in self defense, thinking there was a home intruder without knowing he shot a deputy.