By Lisa Gresci

NORTH GRAFTON (CBS) – A softball tournament was held on Saturday in North Grafton to remember Worcester Police Officer Manny Familia, who was laid to rest on Thursday. Officer Familia died a little over a week ago after he jumped into Green Hill Pond to try and save 14-year-old Troy Love who also drowned.

“We all knew Manny growing up since he was 14, 15-years-old. We’ve got to show how we love Manny,” Delio Fernandez, a friend and tournament organizer, said.

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Each softball swing pitched to help the family of Officer Manny Familia.

Worcester Police Officer Manny Familia. (Photo credit: City of Worcester)

“We couldn’t miss this event for the world. My brother was a part of this community. He was this community, so we here representing him,” said Elvin Familia, Manny’s brother.

On Thursday, police officers lined the 2.5 mile procession route in Worcester as Officer Familia’s casket left the Mercadante Funeral Home on Plantation Street and was taken to police headquarters. There it was put on a horse-drawn-carriage for the rest of the journey to St. John’s Catholic Church on Temple Street for the funeral.

After the funeral service, Officer Familia was laid to rest in a private ceremony at Saint John’s Cemetery in Worcester.

“There’s no doubt he was going to jump in the way he did. That’s just the person he is,” Troy Johnson of Hubbard Field Softball, explained.

“He truly was the epitome of a hero,” State Representative, David Muradian, added.

The tournament was held to celebrate both Manny’s life and roots through a game he loved.

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“We all came here to play, and he was part of them and part of all this. So, he would have been happy to see all of these guys out here,” Manny’s brother Eric Familia said.

The now-annual tournament raised nearly $5,000 Saturday afternoon.

Manny’s brother, nephew and fellow officer and friend, standing in solidarity around his badge number on the field, 267. (WBZ-TV)

“He was an amazing man and he loved and he did everything with love,” said Allen Familia, Manny’s nephew. “And I’m so glad the whole entire city has done so much for him and our entire family.”

“I want people to remember Manny that he loved to serve,” said Elvin. It was in his heart to serve. Him, making sure everybody else, not only his family was taken care of.”

GoFundMe accounts have been set up for both the Familia family and the family of Troy Love, the boy from Virginia who the officer tried to save.

Donations for the Familia family are also being accepted through the Worcester Police Department Credit Union.

Checks can be mailed to:

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The Familia Family Memorial Fund
c/o Worcester Police Federal Credit Union
805 West Boylston Street
Worcester, MA 01606

Lisa Gresci