PORTLAND, Maine — Flanked with support by State Police troopers, the widow of officer Ben Campbell decided at the last minute that she would speak and say her final farewell to her husband at Tuesday's funeral. Hilary Campbell walked past her husband's familiar uniform to speak before more than 3,000 officers and citizens about the man she loves.
In a tearful goodbye that was hard to hear due to the Cross Insurance Arena's audio issues, Campbell promised her late husband that she would try to raise the couple's 6-month-old, Everett, the way Ben would have with "patience and a pleasant outlook."
Campbell called Ben, who joined the Maine State Police in 2012, the love of her life saying, "I love you with every piece of my being." The young widow promised her late husband that their son would know who her husband was.
'My name is Hilary Campbell. On April 3rd my son and my life changed forever. I am still trying to process this, please bear with me. If there is anything I can say as I try to wrap my head around it it would be that we all slow down. Take life in. Life gets crazy. Small things become larger than they should and get more attention than they deserve. Don't waste your time on it. If you are mad at a loved one that's ok, anger is born. But life goes on. Don't let negative emotions fill your heart, because no one has promised you tomorrow.
To Adam Cooper, you were the first one on the scene, you tried and did what you could to save my husbands life, and for that, I will forever be in your debt and I will pray for you. For the others involved - the response team, the staff at Northern Light Eastern Maine Medical Center and all the countless others that lent their hand and put forth their best efforts, from the bottom of my heart thank you.
To my family, Ben's family, my friends...my state police family, you have been my rock. And thank you does not begin to describe my appreciation for you all. I truly love each and every one of you. To the motor vehicalist my husband assisted, I have prayed that his perfect smile and the positivity he greeted you with will be with you forever engraved in your minds and your heart. I hope that it will help your healing, for I know your life is forever changed. To everyone who has reached out to me, calls, messages, cards and prayers, I want you to know it has not been overlooked or gone unnoticed. To all of you here today including my extended law enforcement family who have traveled from all over the country to honor my husband, thank you.
Lastly to my husband, my best friend and the love of my life, I can't begin to say everything I want to say in this moment because I planned on having a lifetime to say it, so I will just leave it.
I love you. I love you with every piece of my being. I promise you I will do everything in my power to raise our son as we planned. I promise to try to have your patience and your positive outlook. I promise you that your son will know you are and how much you adored him because I will tell him every single day. I promise to try and make you proud. I promise to allow Everett pick his own favorite NFL team, but I can't promise I won't nudge him towards the Pats if he begins to favor the Steelers. To me you became a hero the morning of April 3rd. You were my hero from the first day I met you. I will always love you. We love you daddy, until we meet again. Thank you.'
Detective Benjamin Campbell's funeral service
Det. Campbell would have turned 32 years old on Monday, April 8.
A call went out over the scanner at the end of Campbell's funeral t 1:48 p.m. on Tuesday, April 9:
"Detective Benjamin Campbell a seven year veteran of the Maine State Police was taken from us in the line of duty on April 3, 2019. Detective Campbell cherished working side by side with his work family and the community he served. Ben you are a hero and will be missed by all. God bless you and your family. Rest easy Detective Campbell. You are now 10-7 (out of service). We have the watch from here."
A fund has been set up through Bangor Savings Bank for anyone who wants to donate to Campbell's wife and son. Those interested can donate via PayPal or send donations to:
Detective Benjamin Campbell Fund
Bangor Savings Bank
P.O. Box 454
Skowhegan, ME 04976