Widow's Tearful Farewell at Husband's Funeral: 'I Promise You That Your Son Will Know You'
On April 3, 2019, detective Ben Campbell with the Maine State Police was killed in the line of duty after being hit by a runaway tractor-trailer wheel on the I-95 in Hampden. He had stopped to help another driver in the snow.
Detective Campbell was just 31 years old and would have turned 32 on April 8. He is survived by his wife, Hilary, and their 6-month-old son, Everett.
Campbell was loved by many. It is clear he made a huge impact on his fellow officers and his local community.
“I promise to honor your sacrifice by never forgetting you…EVER,” fellow state trooper and friend of Campbell, Ryan Fitch, wrote on Facebook. “I promise to do whatever I can to help your family, your agency, and your legacy.”
The detective was said to “have the heart of a guardian” WMTW reported. Three thousand mourners joined together in remembrance and celebration his life at Portland’s Cross Insurance Arena on April 9.
“What does it take to be a Maine trooper?” Maine State Police Col. John Cote asked at the funeral. “If there was a recipe, Ben Campbell had all of the key ingredients.”
So many good words spoken about this man, but it was his wife, Hilary, who had the most heartbreaking and moving words to share.
The grieving widow hadn’t planned to speak before the thousands in attendance, but she changed her mind at the last minute, according to News Centre Maine.
“My name is Hilary Campbell,” she began. “On April 3rd my son and my life changed forever … 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,” she continued. “Small things become larger than they should and get more attention than they deserve. Don’t waste your time on it … Don’t let negative emotions fill your heart, because no one has promised you tomorrow.”
Hilary went on to thank those who responded to her husband’s accident and who have surrounded her since the tragedy.
But the most breath-taking moment in her speech came when she called Ben the love of her life and promised to raise their son to know his daddy.
“I promise you that your son will know you are and how much you adored him because I will tell him every single day,” she said.
“I promise to try and make you proud,” she added. “To me, you didn’t just become 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.”
Our hearts go out to this family as they take the next steps into life without their beloved husband, father and friend.
If you would like to help support the Campbells during this time, you can make a donation to their GoFundMe campaign.
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