Funeral for Minneapolis Park police officer

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - Mourners will pay their final respects Wednesday morning to a Minneapolis Park police officer who was fatally injured in the line of duty.

A funeral Mass for officer Mark Bedard is scheduled for eleven a.m. at the Basilica of St. Mary in downtown Minneapolis. Bedard died last Friday -- eight days after he was struck by a squad car while chasing a suspect in north Minneapolis. He was 34.

Governor Pawlenty, who will attend Bedard's funeral, ordered U.S. and Minnesota flags to fly at half-staff Wednesday at the Capitol.

Police spokesman Ron Reier said Bedard's death is hard on the Minneapolis police force.

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"One of the officers literally grew up with Mark at Minnehaha Academy and then Augsburg College," said Reier. "One of the officers goes to the Bedard family Christmases because her family has moved away. One of the officers is a godmother to their son Nick. I mean, this is close."

Bedard was a 12-year veteran of the park police force. Survivors include his wife and two-year-old son.

He'll be buried at Lakewood Cemetery in south Minneapolis.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)