Hundreds from across the metro – and the nation – gather to honor Sgt. Tony Beminio

Local News

WEST DES MOINES – Sunday night was the visitation for Sgt. Tony Beminio at Lutheran Church of Hope in West Des Moines. People across the metro, and across the nation, gathered to pay their respects.

Hundreds of people honored Sgt. Beminio, a man who close friends say had a hearty laugh, and a personality that could light up a room.

“He was probably one of the best representatives we had,” said an emotional Sgt. Paul Parizek of the Des Moines Police Department.
 
Sgt. Parizek sported the number 5030 on his badge, the badge number of his friend and colleague Sgt. Tony Beminio.
 
“He sat across from me in roll call for a long time on midnight patrol, and always something under his breath that would make you laugh,” Sgt. Parizek said. “He was a great friend, he was a great partner to have and he was definitely a great part of our department.”
 
Beminio served the Des Moines Police Department for more than a decade, impacting many people throughout the community.
 
George Karnas was a Polk County prosecutor for nearly 30 years, and worked on a few cases with Sgt. Beminio, before the sergeant rose through the ranks.
 
“He always had a smile on his face, he always said it like it was, and he was just exactly what you want in a police officer,” Karnas said. “It’s probably been the most difficult thing I’ve seen in all of my years of life.”
 
It has been especially difficult for police, not just in the metro, but from around the country. Officers from Minnesota, Missouri, Wisconsin and even Utah were seen at Sunday’s visitation. Everyone dealing with the loss of both Sgt. Tony Beminio and Urbandale Officer Justin Martin, who both lost their lives on Wednesday.
 
“We know the sacrifice that was made by these two brave officers and we hope we’re never in that, put in that position, but the only thing you can do is come here and show your support,” said Brian Donnelly, a retired policeman from New Jersey who drove all the way to West Des Moines just to pay his respects. “This is what we do, it’s called a family of blue, you hear about the thin blue line, this is what it’s all about.”
 
This outpouring of support has meant the world to the Des Moines Police Department.
 
“I mean just like with Carlos and Susan, you know, and Shawn Miller… the more that these officers that we see and the more people from the community that we see come out… It’s a heavy load we’re going to be carrying for a while,” Sgt. Parizek said. “But every little bit and every one person that comes out and helps us out, lightens that load tremendously.”
 
Sgt. Beminio leaves behind a wife and three children. His funeral is set for Monday at 11 a.m., at the Lutheran Church of Hope in West Des Moines.
 
Officer Justin Martin’s funeral will be Tuesday at 11:40 a.m., in his hometown of Rockwell City, at South Calhoun Middle School.
 
Stay with Local 5 for full coverage.

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