Graveside gun salute and helicopter flyover planned for officer’s funeral

Staff report


A capacity crowd is expected Wednesday to fill St. Vitus Church for the funeral Mass for Shenango Township Police Officer William “Jerry” McCarthy.

Several city streets will be closed for the procession to Crestview Cemetery in Grove City, where a Pennsylvania State Police graveside gun salute and helicopter flyover are planned, said Sgt. Dan Ekis of the state police.

The Mass will be at 11:30 a.m. in the church at 910 S. Mercer St., which seats about 1,000 people, said Russell Noga, owner of the funeral home bearing his name, which is handling arrangements.

Friends may call from 1 to 7 p.m. today in the church.

Pallbearers will be from the Shenango Township Police Department and the Lawrence County District Attorney’s office.

A state police ceremonial unit will attend the church service and the burial.

McCarthy, 60, of New Castle, a former Grove City College police officer, was killed Thursday when the cruiser he was riding in was hit by 26-year-old Kylee Barletto, who police said was fleeing from them. She was released from St. Elizabeth Health Center on Monday and was in the Mahoning County jail awaiting extradition to Pennsylvania.

Ekis wasn’t sure how many people to expect for the service, but he noted that about 1,200 officers attended the funeral of State Trooper Blake Coble, who was killed last October in a traffic crash in Beaver County, Pa.

Led by police motorcycles, the McCarthy funeral procession, which is expected to begin between 12:30 and 1 p.m., will use South Mill, Taylor and East Washington streets and travel past the Shenango Township Police Department at 1000 Willowbrook Road.

It will then use U.S. Route 422, state Routes 388 and 108, Interstate 79, and state Route 208 to Grove City, where the cemetery is on state Route 173.

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