ST. PETERSBURG — Dozens of police vehicles were stationed near Tropicana Field early Tuesday in preparation for the memorial service of Officer David Crawford.
And hours before the service began, motorists were experiencing delays. Drivers reported bumper-to-bumper brake lights on Interstate 275 going both ways near the Howard Frankland Bridge.
Gandy Boulevard from I-275 to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Street N was closed at 8 a.m. and could remain so as late as 6 p.m.
Thousands are expected to gather at First Baptist Church on Gandy for the 11 a.m. service. The program, which will include speeches, final honors, a flyover and a 21-gun salute, is expected to last until 2 p.m.
About 2:30 p.m., a police procession will escort Officer Crawford to Gross Funeral Home in St. Petersburg. Major delays are expected along the procession route, which is as follows:
• From First Baptist east on 94th Avenue N.
• South on King Street.
• West on First Avenue N, then south on 64th Street. The family will go to the funeral home at 6366 Central Ave.
• East on First Avenue S to the Tropicana Field parking lot.
Today's memorial will be shown live on tampabay.com, the St. Petersburg Times website. All local TV stations will also broadcast it live, and it will be aired on StPeteTV, Bright House Channel 615, Knology Channel 15 and Verizon FiOS Channel 20.