Loved ones, community gather for candlelight vigil to honor fallen MBPD officer

Updated: Oct. 7, 2020 at 11:23 PM EDT
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MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) – A vigil was held Wednesday night to honor the life of fallen Myrtle Beach police Pfc. Jacob Hancher.

He was shot and killed while responding to a domestic dispute Saturday night along 14th Avenue South.

The Candlelight Rosary Vigil was held at 7:30 p.m. at the Columbarium at the Catholic Church of St. James where Hancher was a parishioner.

Over 100 people attended the vigil, with a rosary, candle and chair by their side.

One of the first things people saw at the Columbarium space was a picture of Officer Hancher, with flowers decorating the framework.

Pastor Oscar Borda led the vigil service, in the open space for the community to mourn and celebrate Hancher’s legacy.

Borda started off the vigil describing what he remembered most about Hancher.

“Jacob was not just a police officer but a good and faithful disciple of the lord,” Borda said. “We are sad, we are down, our lord knows. But we got to pray for peace, reconciliation, forgiveness, peace and healing because we are people of hope. Jacob, may God welcome you with open arms around you, your family and your police family.”

Borda then asked those attending the vigil to standup for a moment of silence, out of respect for Hancher’s servitude to the community.

“I’m appreciative to Father Borda for setting up this prayer service for Jacob Hancher,” said Lynn Olson, a Myrtle Beach community member. “To Jacob, for your soul, we thank you, we know you will be with our lord. And thank you for your service, and the rest of the gentleman and women [that serve], stay safe.”

During his time as a parishioner of the church, Hancher served as a missionary on a 2017 mission to Honduras, and that’s where he met his best friend Alexander Hernandez.

Hernandez said Hancher loved to try new things and the two would go to concerts together.

He said even though his friend’s life was cut short, his life would be so different if he had never met Hancher.

“I felt like he taught me a lot just by being a person. I felt like I grew along with him,” Hernandez said. “I mean you don’t find friendships like that. It’s very rare to find people that you feel like they’re like brothers. And just the thought of not being able to have met him, or not being able to spend that time with him, it would just be a little different. You just don’t find friends like that.”

Hancher’s youth group leader told WMBF News that every Sunday morning, he and his mom would come to Sunday Mass and he will be missed deeply by the whole church community.

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