Listen above to the Grand Island Emergency Communication Center's end of watch call for Chris Marcello

HASTINGS, NE — A cherished member of the Grand Island Police Department is gone but his fellow officers say his legacy will continue.

Chris Marcello died of natural causes last week at the age of 42. His funeral was Wednesday morning at Third City Christian Church in Grand Island. He was buried at Parkview Cemetery in Hastings.

In a news release, Capt. Jim Duering described Marcello as “a true hero.” He earned the department’s life-saving award, worked as a child abuse investigator, trained future officers and was a member of the department’s Tactical Response Unit. Marcello served 23 years in the Army National Guard and retired as a First Sergeant.

At the funeral, speakers praised Marcello for taking his job seriously but never taking himself too seriously.