A morning rain underscored the somber mood as hundreds of family, friends and colleagues gathered to pay their final respects to a Cook County correctional officer killed last week in a hit-and-run crash.
"She always made you laugh no matter what you were going through and I'm just going to try to laugh and smile for her today," said fellow officer Keisha Macklin.
Funeral services for Nikkii Bostic-Jones were held Thursday morning at United Baptist Church on Chicago's west side. The 38-year-old wife and mother lay in state for an hour before the funeral and was buried immediately after the service.
Among those gathered were officers from the Lake County (Indiana) Sheriff's Department who felt the same pain in March when Officer Britney Meux was killed by a hit-and-run driver.
"We want to give them the moral support that we got when we lost our fallen officer. We come together as a family and we want them to know that we're all a family, no matter where we're from," said Deputy Warden Niecey Gore.
Bostic-Jones, a 12-year veteran, was struck by a van July 18 while crossing the street near 29th and California on her way to work at the Cook County Jail.
Juan Bello, 57, faces charges of reckless homicide, leaving the scene of an accident involving death, failure to yield to a pedestrian, driving too fast for conditions, and driving on a revoked license.
Bail was set at $3 million Saturday for Bello, who lives near the Cook County Jail complex in the Little Village neighborhood.
According to records, Juan Bello received court supervision in 2002 for a DUI from LaSalle County. Bello was arrested in September of 2009 for a DUI in Iowa.