funeral of Wirral PC Dave Phillips 2 Nov 2015

RSS

undefinedThis took place at Liverpool Cathedral with some 2,000 mourners in attendance. Crowds lined the route of the funeral procession through the city from Albert Dock. Family and colleagues of the officer heard the Bishop of Birkenhead speak in his sermon of PC Phillips (PICTURED) as "one of Merseyside's finest policemen, a gentleman, a true friend".

Mourners were led by Mr Phillips' widow Jen, while daughters Abigail and Sophie lit a candle in memory of their father.

The service, held on Monday 2 November, was led by the Revd Lyndon Bannon, who is Assistant Priest at Christ Church, Willaston, Wirral. Lyndon’s daughter Pippa is a friend of the constable’s daughter, Abigail.

David Phillips (known as Dave) was struck by a car and killed during a pursuit in Wallasey, Wirral, on Monday 5 October. He was 34. He leaves a widow, Jen, and their two daughters, aged 7 and 3.

His funeral service featured readings from Daniel 12.1 and from John’s Gospel 14.1-6. The hymns were ‘Abide With Me’, 'I Vow To Thee, My Country’ and ‘Jerusalem’.

There was a poem written and read in the cathedral by Kate Phillips, Dave’s sister, which spoke of "the brightest star in the sky". The officer's other sister, Hannah Whieldon, also paid tribute to Dave during the service. 

Conducting the service, the Revd Lyndon Bannon, described PC Phillips as "a loving gentleman" and said his widow Jen was an "inspiration".

Lyndon said that Mr Phillips had "served the nation" and put his life on the line every day. He added: "If you want to see how many lives he has touched for the better, if you want to know how much he meant to everybody, then simply look around you.

“Look around at the immense number of people who have gathered here today from across the whole United Kingdom.”

And in a moving sermon, Bishop Keith Sinclair said: “There are no words that can explain or make sense of what happened on October 5th. How one of Merseyside’s finest policeman, a gentleman, a true friend, who one moment is doing his duty in the early hours with his colleagues, speaking on the radio, and then suddenly taken and gone.”

The bishop added: “We have come to remember Dave and commit him into God’s hands now, holding onto these words of God for him and for us, for Jen and Abi and Sophie and all of us.

“There will be many words today and in the days and months and years ahead, good words, words which will keep speaking to Abi and Sophie when they have grown and will want to know all they can know about their Dad.

"And there will be time for other words, words about wisdom, righteousness and judgement, and what they mean; words about Jesus and how he makes we who are unrighteous, righteous by his cross; words about resurrection for the perpetrators of violence as well as their victims; but today ... these words, words of resurrection as we receive them for Dave and ourselves as God brings His resurrection life - now as well as then.

"Those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the sky, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars for ever and ever”.
Full Sermon

There was much media coverage of the funeral. Lyndon Bannon gave interviews to ITN, BBC North West, Juice FM and the Liverpool Echo. Bishop Keith was interviewed by the BBC News, Radio City (based in Liverpool), and BBC Radio 5 live.

PC Phillips was also remembered at the All Souls Requiem Eucharist held at Chester Cathedral on Sunday (1 November), as part of the traditional remembering of all those who have died. The music in Chester featured the well-loved requiem by Duruflé. A special mention of the constable was made in the intercessions by Lyndon Bannon, who as well as his parish duties in Willaston is also the Assistant Head at Woodchurch C of E High School, Wirral.

One of the movements from the requiem service at Chester, 'Pie Jesu', was dedicated to the memory PC Phillips. This service also attracted media attention. It was reported prominently by BBC North West Tonight.

Above: PC David Phillips with his family

Above: The Revd Lyndon Bannon is interviewed by the BBC

 

Above: Liverpool Cathedral, scene of the dignified and moving funeral