For 3-year-old Cohen Chastain, fallen Polk County Detective Kristen Hearne’s legacy lives on.
Earlier this month, the toddler from Rockmart, Georgia, made sure Hearne got the respect she deserved when he saluted and stood at attention for over two hours during a funeral processional in her honor. And on Tuesday, Cohen was named an honorary deputy for his thoughtful act.
“Many of you might recall this amazing three-year-old. Cohen stood for more than two hours during the processional honoring our sister, Det. Kristen Hearne. We wanted to bless Cohen for his selfless act of support and love,” the Floyd County Sheriff’s office shared on Facebook.
The little boy, who wore a police officer’s costume with padded muscles, was gifted a custom-built Power Wheels Police SUV that had the Floyd County Sheriff’s Office insignia emblazoned the car door and “Deputy Cohen” stickered on the windshield.
Then, Cohen stole the hearts of everyone in attendance at the special ceremony when he recited the entire Pledge of Allegiance.
On Sept. 29, Hearne, a mother to a young son and five-year veteran of the force, was shot and killed by a man with an outstanding warrant for his arrest while investigating a stolen car, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. She became the first Polk County law enforcement officer to die in the line of duty.
Just the day before she died, Hearne, who started as a jailer in Floyd County before returning home to Polk, had pondered what would happen to her son Issac if she were to die.
“She talked to me Thursday afternoon. About Isaac,” Hearne’s mother, Trish Brewer, told the AJC. “She said, if anything happened to her please take care of my baby. I said ‘Kristen, don’t talk this junk to me. There’s nobody who could replace you.’ “