Funeral service Wednesday for Eatonton police officer who died after helping break up fight

obrown@macon.comMay 6, 2014 

A funeral service will be held Wednesday afternoon for an Eatonton police officer who died Sunday night.

Noel Lee Hawk, 52, of Madison, died of a heart attack after helping defuse a confrontation at a fast-food restaurant.

“He was a fine officer and a good friend to a lot of people,” Eatonton Police Chief Kent Lawrence said. “If you called him in the middle of the night and said your car had broken down, he’d say ‘I’m putting my shoes on now.’ ... He will be sadly missed by myself and the entire department.”

Officers had answered a call to a McDonald’s about 7:50 p.m. Sunday after a report of a fight between an adult and a juvenile. Three officers, including Hawk, helped quell the situation.

A short time later, though, the incident heated up again after several family members and friends arrived at the scene. During the arrest of two people, Hawk collapsed. Officers and a bystander started CPR on Hawk, and Putnam County EMS workers took over once they arrived. Hawk was taken to Putnam County General Hospital, where he died.

He was a 12-year veteran of the Eatonton police force and had served with the Morgan County Sheriff’s Office before that, Lawrence said.

Hawk was a lifelong resident of Morgan County and a member of Beacon Heights Baptist Church. His hobbies included riding motorcycles and horses, the chief said.

Visitation was held at two different times Tuesday at A.E. Carter Funeral Home in Madison, Lawrence said, and “the line was all the way out to the parking lot” with people waiting to pay their respects to the family.

He is survived by his children, Brittany Lowrey, Taylor Talley, Heather Brandt, Victoria Hawk and Zachary Hawk, according to the funeral home. Survivors also include a brother, Neal Hawk, and his parents, Bobby and Martha Hawk.

The funeral service will be held at 2 p.m. Wednesday in the funeral home chapel. Burial will follow at Rutledge Cemetery.

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