Dozens of Phoenix police officers stepped up in a show of support for the daughter of their fallen comrade on Wednesday.
Tatum Raetz -- the daughter of Officer Daryl Raetz, who was fatally struck by an SUV in the line of duty on Sunday -- was joined by her father's colleagues at her kindergarten graduation, according to KSAZ-TV.
Close to 100 officers from around the area crowded into the small auditorium to watch the young girl get her diploma as her mother sat in the front row with tears in her eyes.
"The purpose of us is to be here in proxy for Daryl and to let her know that we're here for her," Phoenix Police Officer Keith Garn told the news station.
The officers said that seeing the little girl smile helps ease the pain of losing one of their own.
"Maybe not everybody knew him personally as an officer, but he's our brother and he always will be and we will support his family forever and this is just the first step," Sara Garza of the Phoenix Police Department Drug Enforcement Bureau said.
"We honor his memory, but we celebrate and we're there with his family and that's the most important thing we can do."
The 29-year-old police officer was a six-year veteran of the department and was an Iraqi war veteran.