Fayette County

Officers join family in honoring retired Lexington detective at funeral

Herald-Leader staff report

Lexington police officers, family and friends remembered retired detective Phillip Harrison during a funeral at at Southland Christian Church on Richmond Road.

Harrison, who left the department in May while he was ill, died Wednesday of pancreatic cancer. He was 52. Following Friday’s funeral, he was entombed at Blue Grass Memorial Gardens in Nicholasville. Harrison is survived by his wife, Jana, and a 12-year-old daughter.

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Charles Bertram cbertram@herald-leader.com

Harrison was with the police department about 20 years and worked with numerous units.

Police Sgt. Billy Richmond previously said Harrison was “an officer’s officer” who had a sharp wit, spoke his mind and tried to find the good in people.

Sgt. Randall Combs officiated at the funeral. In recalling Harrison’s many contributions, Combs highlighted Harrison’s dedication, including one moment that was captured in a series of photos by the Herald-Leader.

In 2014, Harrison was returning to the office from lunch when he heard a dispatch call about an officer being assaulted. He responded and found the suspect who had left the initial location. Harrison chased and tackled the man.

“He was known as the old man of the unit but he really showed us that day how it’s done,” Combs said. “He got the bad guy.”

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