Officer Stephen Bond remembered - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Officer Stephen Bond remembered

OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) -

By Sylvia Hall – bio | email

OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) - Police officers and public servants wearing badges from across the coast joined family and friends of Stephen Bond Saturday to bid a final farewell.  They said goodbye Saturday at Bradford O'Keefe Funeral Home in Ocean Springs. 

Mourners remembered Bond as a dedicated public servant who loved people and his community.

Officer Bond went missing after a boating accident last May.  Family, friends, the Coast Guard and local law enforcement searched the Mississippi Sound for weeks after his disappearance, but did not find a trace of Bond.  The family held a memorial service for him last summer. 

He remained missing until late January, when his remains were found near Chandaleur Island, off the coast of Louisiana.  Family members and friends said although they miss Bond tremendously, they're relieved he's finally home.

"I knew he wanted to come home.  And today is, it's sad, but it's a good day.  He's getting what he deserves," said Angela Bond, his widow.  "I knew it took time.  We knew he was out there somewhere, just.  It doesn't matter how long its been, that it was that long, no matter what.  He's home."

Earlier this month, several of Bond's fellow officers traveled to Louisiana to form a motorcade to escort his body back home.

"He got the escort home the other day, which was such an honor bestowed on him," said Bond.  "And it meant the world to the family for those guys to want to take their time and go do that for him, and I know he would be honored to do it.  And today is all about him.  It's a celebration of his life."

Bond leaves behind a large family, including two children, his son Ethan and daughter Rhilee.

"I've got the kids to take care of so I have to stay strong for them," said Angela Bond.  "I have the support of family and friends and the City of Ocean Springs, and other police officers that were really good friends with him.  And if it wasn't for them, I probably would have fallen apart a long time ago."

Angela Bond said even though she still misses her husband dearly, she's glad she and the rest of his family can finally find peace in knowing he's home.

"I sat there and cried at the memorial service," said Angela Bond.  "And today, I don't want to.  I'm just happy that he's here."

Copyright 2010 WLOX. All rights reserved.

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