COLLINSVILLE, Ill. – The funeral is underway for Pontoon Beach Police Officer Tyler Timmins who was killed in the line of duty one week ago. There are dozens of law enforcement officers on hand. A police cruiser and several pictures of Timmins are also on display.
Timmins leaves behind his wife Linsey, who he married on September 11, 2021, and his daughter Chloe.
Linsey, a patrol officer at SIUE, spoke through tears as she remembered her husband. She said he loved being a police officer and truly ‘bled blue’. She also called her husband a hero.
“For me, the definition of hero is my husband. Every day that he woke up and put on that uniform, strapped that vest to his chest and walked out of that door he was courageous. He was courageous for choosing a career to serve and protect the lives of complete strangers, putting his life on the line every day and in return paying the ultimate sacrifice,” said Timmins.
His widow also said she recalled asking Timmins if he’d want to do anything else when the state enacted a new criminal justice reform bill in the state.
She shared a conversation the two had saying, “Linsey, we can’t do anything different. It is not who we are. It is not how God created us. He called for us to serve and I for one will never deny what I’ve been called to do just because someone is making it more difficult for me and neither would you. If we walked away, if all the good ones walked away, who is going to be left,” said Timmins.
More than 2,000 American flags were set up at the funeral site by The Flagman’s Mission. They also line the entire procession route from the convention center to Woodland Hill Cemetery in East Alton where Timmins will be laid to rest after a private graveside service.
Monday night, many first responders and friends of the Timmins family came to the convention center to pay their respects during a visitation for Timmins.
A funeral procession will follow the funeral. It will travel from Collinsville and work its way north on 111 to 270 to 255 and then 111 again before arriving at the cemetery.
He was 36 years old and spent 14 years as a police officer. Officer Timmins died Tuesday, October 26 after being shot at the Speedway Gas Station on Route 111. Illinois State Police investigators said Timmins approached a possible stolen vehicle when the suspect started shooting. Scott Hyden, 31, of Highland, Illinois, was arrested at the scene. He has been charged with two counts of first-degree murder, one count of aggravated discharge of a firearm at a peace officer, one count of unlawful possession of weapons by a felon, one count of unlawful possession of a stolen firearm, and one count of offenses relating to motor vehicles.
The Granite City School District is collecting donations for BackStoppers at all district schools throughout this week, and the owner of Gulf Shores Restaurant and Grill said every dollar spent by a customer at his Edwardsville location this Thursday will go to the Timmins family.