CEDAR PARK, Texas — It's been a little over a month since the Marble Falls Police Department lost one of their officers in a motorcycle accident. On Saturday, his son graduated high school.
"I've been waiting so long for this day," said Hunter Howe, as he held back tears.
They say family comes in different forms, and for Howe family is even more necessary on his special day.
The Leander High School graduation happened at the HEB Center in Cedar Park.
"We just wish there was one extra person here," said Lindsey Howe, Hunter's mom. "We know he has the best seat in the house."
Hunter lost his dad a little more than a month ago. Officer Andrew Howe lost control of his motorcycle, which ended in a fatal wreck.
"He was dad and I loved him very much," Hunter said.
Unfortunately, his father didn't make it to his high school graduation, but at the end of the stage Officer Howe's brothers in blue took dad's place to congratulate him.
"Officer Howe was very special to us," said Sgt. Cory Munoz. "To be here on this day is amazing."
PHOTOS: Remembering Marble Falls Officer Howe
The bond of the Marble Falls Police officer was really strong with Officer Howe. He served for the police department for about two years.
"When he passed, it was one of our brothers we lost and it was hard for everybody," said Sgt. Munoz as he held back tears.
Officer Howe was on his way to work when the accident happened.
"I'm sure he's up there laughing and cracking jokes at us because that's how Andrew was," Sgt. Munoz explained.
As thousands of families cheered on each graduate, a special bond grew as once complete strangers took the place of a friend that passed away.
"Thank you all so much, this means a lot to all of us and we really appreciate it," Hunter told the police officers who took his dad's place.
"Don't take life for granted because you never know when you have to answer to the good Lord above," Sgt. Munoz explained. "Make sure you cherish every moment you have."
Hunter will be attending Texas State University. He says he now has big shoes to fill after the passing of his dad.
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