NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The city will honor native son William Evans on Wednesday evening as he is returned to Northern Berkshire for burial.
Evans, a member of the U.S. Capitol Police, was killed on Friday, April 2, when a driver slammed his car into a checkpoint he was guarding at the Capitol.
He will be escorted home in a procession that will travel along Route 2, turning at the Veterans Memorial to proceed down Main Street and from there along Route 8 to the Paciorek Funeral Home in Adams, which is handling the arrangements for the private funeral Mass and burial.
"I know that Officer Evans and his family have deep roots in the city of North Adams and the town of Clarksburg, and in our local schools," said Mayor Thomas Bernard. "His tragic loss is a shock for all of us, and for his friends, classmates, and colleagues locally and in his career as a United States Capitol Police Officer who knew, loved, and always will miss him. I hope that everyone in our community who is able will take part in this demonstration of respect for Officer Evans and support for his family as they return to our community."
Evans was raised in North Adams and Clarksburg and was a graduate of Drury High School. He served with the U.S. Capitol Police since 2003 and was a member of the Capitol Division's First Responder's unit.
He lay in state in the Capitol Rotunda on Tuesday, the sixth private citizen to be so honored and the fourth Capitol Police officer.
"I'm sure all those memories from North Adams and Clarksburg never changed who Billy was," said President Biden, speaking at Tuesday's service and describing Evans as "defined by his dignity, his decency, his loyalty, and his courage."
Speaking to Evans family, he said he understood the pain of losing a child, a spouse. The president lost his first wife and daughter in a car crash, and buried a son who died from cancer.
"Losing a son, daughter, brother, sister, mom, dad — it's like losing a piece of your soul. But it's buried deep, but it comes back," he said. "Your son, your husband, your brother, your dad was a hero. And he's part of you. It's in your blood.
"My prayer for you is that moment when a smile comes before the tear, quicker than longer."
Wednesday's procession will feature state and local first-responders and is expected to reach North Adams at approximately 7:30 Wednesday evening.
Members of the North Adams community are invited to gather along Main Street and in front of City Hall to pay their respects as the procession makes its way through the city. Because the procession will pass through the city around nightfall, people are encouraged to carry small flashlights or candles to light up the procession route and to show support for Officer Evans, his family and friends, and the community that mourns his loss.
In recognition of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic community members who wish to pay respect to Evans during the procession are encouraged to wear face coverings and to practice physical distancing to the greatest degree possible.
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