Tim Barber, a Tempe police detective who died last Saturday morning, was laid to rest in Chandler this morning.
The 42-year-old died a little more than a day after he made a gutsy appearance at a very successful fund-raising barbeque at the east Valley agency's Apache subdivision.
Barber, who had waged a long and heroic fight against prostate cancer, spoke briefly at the event, thanking everyone present for thinking of his family and their needs.
Immediately afterward, family members drove the ten-year police veteran to a hospital, where his condition deteriorated rapidly and he died on Saturday morning.
"Tim was all about catching perps and fighting cancer," says his pal Dan Masters, a sergeant at Tempe PD. "He was one of those people who I never heard anything negative about, not one word. He would light up a room with his attitude and sense of humor, and he showed respect to everyone he met, from suspects to victims."
Barber worked property crimes until about a month ago, even as his physical strength waned after the long battle against an insidious foe that had resurfaced inside his body.
We Believe Local Journalism is Critical to the Life of a City
Support Our Journalism
Sgt. Masters says that donations in excess of $60,000 have come in to help out the Barber family, especially vital because Autumn Barber is pregnant with twins and she recently lost her job (Barber also left behind a 20-year-old daughter).
"Our entire department from top to bottom and many, many people in the community totally have bought into helping Tim and his family out, and I know he appreciated it deeply," Masters says. "He was a good man, a really good man.