ALIQUIPPA — More than 1,000 law enforcement officers from across the country stood in their uniforms, with heads bowed, as state police Cpl. Joseph Pokorny’s casket was brought into church. In the distance, bagpipers played.

The officers gathered to say their goodbye to Pokorny, who was shot to death early Monday in Carnegie. On Friday morning, his fellow troopers filed past Pokorny’s casket and offered a final salute to the 91st Pennsylvania state trooper killed in the line of duty.

His death touched off a huge manhunt across the Pittsburgh area. On Wednesday, police charged Leslie D. Mollett, 30, formerly of Mount Oliver, with the killing. Authorities believe Mollett may have killed Pokorny with the trooper’s own weapon.

The Rev. Joseph Kleppner, pastor at St. Frances Cabrini Church, told the mourners at the funeral that Pokorny was “an extension of the Lord’s light.” He urged them to celebrate Pokorny’s life and not dwell on the sadness of his death.

“In a world marred by sin or violence ... Joe and his fellow officers were all about protecting and saving life,” Kleppner said. “In the case of Joseph Pokorny, it meant committing the ultimate sacrifice of giving his life.”

Kleppner said Pokorny was a family man who gave of himself beyond his job’s requirements, noting how he regularly helped his neighbors, even cleaning one neighbor’s chimney.

“Joseph was known to say, ’If you need me, I’ll be there,”’ Kleppner said.

Pittsburgh Bishop Donald Wuerl addressed his comments to Pokorny’s teenage son and daughter.

“In life there’s violence and chaos but there’s also goodness. What separates the violence and chaos from the goodness is that thin line of people who serve the law,” Wuerl said. “The night he went out on patrol he went there because he decided in his life that he was going to do something that counts.”

Pokorny, 45, was assigned to the Moon Township barracks. He graduated from the state police academy in November 1983 and worked in barracks in Washington, Belle Vernon, Findlay and Newville, with much of his career spent working undercover in narcotics.

Carolyn Pokorny, the trooper’s sister-in-law, remembered him as a “man’s man” who loved to hunt and fish.

“He was so darn charismatic you were just drawn to him,” she said.

After the funeral, a procession several miles long, with the emergency lights in use on several hundred squad cars, followed Pokorny’s casket to Mount Olivet Catholic Cemetery.

Officers came from as far away as California to pay their respects to Pokorny, including Lt. Paul Taylor, of the Delaware State Police, who drove seven hours to be at the service.

He said he wanted to show support for Pokerny’s family and solidarity to the Pennsylvania State Police.

“You have an officer killed in the line of duty and we’ll drive as far as we have to,” Taylor said.

During the burial service, with the more than 1,000 officers standing in long columns along the roadways surrounding the funeral chapel, mourners flinched as a 21-gun salute was fired in Pokorny’s honor.

Two buglers then played revelry, before bagpipers and drummers from the Greater Pittsburgh Police Emerald Society gave a haunting rendition of “Amazing Grace” that ended with one lone bagpiper walking away, playing the gospel solo until he couldn’t be heard any longer.

“It’s obviously a sad day for the department,” Col. Jeffrey Miller, commissioner of the Pennsylvania State Police, said after the service. “One thing Joe left us with is a heck of an example of someone giving of themselves to something greater than just an individual.”

Pokorny’s brother, Frank, who was nicknamed “Fearless” for his special teams play for the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 1980s, said his brother will be missed by many.

“I know my brother was an extremely well respected state trooper,” Frank Pokorny said, “but it’s important to me to express he was a better son, father and brother and will be sorely missed by all those he touched.”

“More importantly, he was my only brother, and my hero, and what he did pales in comparison to what I did.”

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