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Paying Respect to Fallen Trooper

SCRANTON — Thousands showed up for a public viewing for Corporal Bryon Dickson. It began with a procession that included several dozen state police vehicl...

SCRANTON -- Thousands showed up for a public viewing for Corporal Bryon Dickson.

It began with a procession that included several dozen state police vehicles through Dunmore, which Cpl. Dickson called home.

From there his flag-draped casket was taken to the rotunda at Marywood University in Lackawanna County Wednesday afternoon.

Starting at 3 p.m., police, first responders, and people from the community stood in line waiting to pay their respects to Cpl. Dickson and his family.

State police from Massachusetts, Delaware, New Jersey, and New York were in attendance.

At times the line rounded the building and went down the street. Most have never met Cpl. Dickson before, but many we talked to say they now have a new respect for the job he did.

While their focus over the past few days has been on an intense manhunt and murder investigation, troopers took on a much more somber, and maybe more difficult job: looking over fallen Corporal Bryon Dickson's casket and his family.

"You don't think about it when you do it either. You just do it. It's your job," said retired state trooper Rich Lesak.

Lesak knows how troopers are feeling now. He served 16 years in Wayne County. He never knew Cpl. Dickson but traveled to Marywood University to pay tribute to him at a public viewing.

"It's emotional really, because she has little kids and I had five little kids and for those kids Christmas is coming and they have no daddy," said Regina Lesak, Rich's wife.

In total, thousands would come through the doors of Marywood's Liberal Arts Building to thank Cpl. Dickson for his service and thank his family for their sacrifice.

It's a sacrifice that Barbara Romanchick has thought a lot about the past few days. Her son is a state trooper.

"So broken-hearted, but his mom seems so strong. God bless her. I don't know that I could be that strong."

Cpl. Dickson was shot and killed Friday night while leaving his shift at the Blooming Grove barracks in Pike County. Trooper Alex Douglass was shot and wounded.

People who came to his viewing said though now they're focused on Dickson's memorial, their minds are with the troopers still working to solve his murder.

"I want to make sure that they are okay. And that they know everything is going to be okay eventually, and they're going to find the guy who did this," said Marywood student Samantha Ziminski.

As thousands honored Cpl. Dickson, the manhunt for his killer continues. For some, this viewing was a security concern.

"There was a point yesterday that crossed my mind like going to this viewing may not be good, because I was terrified something bad could happen and it`s sad to think about that," said Marywood student Erika Finnis.

"He literally has a whole entire forest to run and hide in, but I think that they will find him, though," said Marywood student Michael McDonough-Ewald.

Cpl. Dickson's funeral is scheduled for 10 a.m. Thursday at St. Peter's Cathedral.

It is by invitation only, but the service can be seen on WNEP, WNEP 2, and on wnep.com.

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