LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- The sound of chatter, the smell of fried goodness and the sight of fish are all typical for a Friday evening fish fry. But the flag at half-staff, the blue ribbons tied on the pole and columns and the long line of people wrapping outside Good Shepherd Parish signal that this fish fry is anything but typical.
"There are people that I've never seen before," Portland resident Mary McCoy said. "I mean they're just coming."
This fish fry is dedicated to fallen LMPD officer Nick Rodman, who was killed while protecting the Portland neighborhood that Good Shepherd calls home.
"Well we do care and this is something we can do," Father John Burke said. "And the turnout has been fantastic."
"He might not have been born here, but he was still a Portland boy," McCoy said. "That's how it is in Portland."
It isn't just Good Shepherd keeping Officer Rodman and his family in its thoughts. Other churches, like St. John Paul II in Hikes Point, are also pitching in, donating a portion of its fish fry profits to the Rodman family.
"I think a lot of people are just more willing to help out than usual," Kirstie Thorpe with St. John Paul II said.
"His family is going to be without him for the rest of their lives, so it's important they know what kind of man he was too, and that we appreciated him," Portland resident Steve Trout said.
Many people coming to these fish fries admit they did not know Officer Rodman personally, but his impact has been felt, especially among those whom he served in the Portland neighborhood.
"When they like you, they will support you," McCoy said. "I don't care if it's somebody you don't know, if somebody needs help, we're going to help them."
"There are a lot of guys working really hard to keep me and keep all of us safe, and they don't get a lot of credit," Burke said.
That credit now being given in honor of one of Louisville's finest, tailoring one tradition into a thank you.
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