1. ITV Report

Goodbye Tango 190: PC David Rathband memorial

The hearse carrying PC Rathband's coffin outside St Nicholas Cathedral in Newcastle Photo: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire

A memorial service to commemorate the life of PC David Rathband has taken place in Newcastle.

PC Rathband, 44, who was shot and blinded by Raoul Moat while he sat unarmed in his patrol car in July 2010, was found hanging at his home in Blyth, Northumberland, on February 29.

The service at St Nicholas' Cathedral was organised by PC Rathband's identical twin brother Darren, also a police officer, and who lives in Australia.

Six pallbearers from the police, fire and ambulance service carried PC Rathband's coffin through the cathedral. Credit: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire
Darren Rathband, twin brother of Pc David Rathband, is supported by his fiancee Angie Stephenson during a memorial service Credit: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire

The service was conducted by the Dean of Newcastle, the Very Reverend Chris Dalliston.

He said: "We hope the service will enable people of every faith and none to come together to honour David's memory.

"This is a celebration of David's life, his bravery and his service to the community.

Among the mourners at St Nicholas' Cathedral, Newcastle, were the Policing Minister Nick Herbert, actor Tim Healy and Northumbria Police chief constable Sue Sim.

The officer's children Mia, 13, and Ashley, 19, were also present at the service.

His widow, Kath Rathband did not attend but she issued a statement saying she will be at his funeral next week and a second memorial service two days later.

Northumbria Police Chief Constable Sue Sim (Centre) at memorial service for Pc David Rathband Credit: Anna Gowthorpe/PA Wire

During the service, Darren Rathband paid an emotional tribute to his "hero" brother, he said:

"I have lost half of me.

"You don't get over it, you just get through it.

"Every day grief puts on a new face.

"My brother said to me 'you're a good brother', I say to my brother 'you're a great brother'.

He also pledged to keep supporting his brother's charity that helps emergency service personnel who have been injured at work.

He said: "I hope the emergency services family now realise that with the reduction in budgets and resources that you and I, have to ensure that the Blue Lamp Foundation continues.

"The foundation was never about David, it was about others, it's about the need, not only for you but the decision-makers to do more than just enough."

PC David Rathband holds a Blue Lamp Foundation trophy Credit: Blue Lamp Foundation

At the end of the service, Darren Rathband said "It is time to take my brother home" before driving the hearse from the cathedral to their native Staffordshire.

Earlier, he had booked his brother out from Etal Lane police station - formally finishing the shift he never completed.

Darren Rathband drives the hearse carrying his brother's coffin from St Nicholas Cathedral, Newcastle Credit: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire