When Gilchrist County resident Janet Johnson heard about fallen Gilchrist County Sheriff’s Sgt. Noel Ramirez and Deputy Taylor Lindsey, she thought: “Not in my backyard.”

“There are no words for this,” Johnson said. “When it hits this close, there are no words for it. This is Gilchrist County.”

Johnson added: “You can’t do anything but just cry until you can’t cry anymore.”

Johnson was one of more than a thousand people who showed up for the fallen deputies’ memorial service at Bell High School Tuesday morning, including Florida Gov. Rick Scott, Gilchrist and surrounding county residents and law enforcement from across the state.

The two men were killed Thursday by a man inside the Ace China restaurant in Trenton while they were on duty and getting lunch.

Law enforcement agencies in attendance included Alachua, Marion, Gilchrist, Dixie, Hernando and Orange County sheriff’s offices, among many others. Police departments in attendance extended from the Gainesville Police Department to the New York City Police Department.

Over slow-moving traffic on County Road 129, due to the large amount of attendees, American flags were draped about 50 feet high, held up by Duke Energy bucket trucks and Gainesville Fire Rescue engines.

Inside the Bell Middle/High School’s auditorium, law enforcement officers stood at attention when family members of Ramirez, 30, and Lindsey, 25, walked into the room.

Ramirez was a seven-year law enforcement officer who had worked for other area departments before joining Gilchrist’s force. He is survived by his wife and two young children.

Lindsey joined the Sheriff’s Office in 2013.

Law enforcement stood guard in front of the men’s caskets — two for each deputy — protecting their fallen brothers.

Gilchrist County Sheriff Bobby Schultz thanked the crowd of people for their support in a tragic time. He said the Sheriff’s Office had received thousands of handwritten letters and cards from people offering condolences.

“We miss our friends so much,” Schultz said. “They came to work and they quickly became family.”

Schultz added: “This is about Noel and Taylor. They deserve this honor and they’re going to receive this honor.

There’s no way to articulate what they meant to us. At the end of the day, we’re family.”

Schultz urged that their sacrifice not be forgotten. “Both of these guys were fun-loving, God-fearing, good, good men.”

Chaplain Eugene Gregory of the Seminole County Sheriff’s Office, who gave the men’s funeral service, asked the crowd rhetorically how many times it took a law enforcement officer being killed before the killings stopped.

He talked about how he feared hearing bagpipes because of how they remind him of sad times.

“Oh their mournful cry ... I don’t recall hearing them in a good setting in 20 years,” he said, holding back tears.

“To me, it means another deputy is gone. I wish I could promise that gatherings like this wouldn’t happen again, but I can’t do that.”

Scott shared a similar sentiment Tuesday.

“There are no words to express the sorrow I feel ... I have children close to (the men’s) age,” he said.

“I can’t imagine not having a chance to talk to them again until I get to heaven.”

Lindsey’s mother, Nan, and Ramirez’s mother, Sonia, prepared statements that were recited by Schultz and law enforcement chaplains.

Schultz talked about how as a young child, Lindsey wanted to be a highway patrolman, but he couldn’t pronounced the name of his dream job.

“He called it highway PEE-trol,” Schultz joked, causing the audience to break their silence in laughter.

Schultz also picked fun at Lindsey for having dance competitions, noting he might not have won all of them.

Gregory talked about Ramirez, who was playing-chess smart. He talked about how he always wanted to help people and be a role model for those around him.

Ramirez’s mother’s statement, read by a female Seminole County chaplain, was written like a letter to her son.

“Noel my boy, you will always be in my soul. I will forever remember you my son,” the woman said. “I can still remember the time I was excited for you to walk and you came out running.

“I am speechless and devastated. How I want to see you and kiss you ... I will love you with all of my heart for the rest of my life.”

Tuesday afternoon, crowds lined up on County Road 129 near Bronson Cemetery awaiting the funeral procession, some holding signs reading, “Gilchrist Strong.”

Jared Pitts, a former police officer with the Trenton Police Department, and his daughter, Emma, 8, and Jayce, 5, arrived early to the men’s funeral.

Pitts said he brought his children so they could see the sacrifices law enforcement make, so they’d always respect them.

“I want (my kids) to understand the full circumstances surrounding this,” he said.

Pitts said he also came to their funeral Tuesday because he knew Lindsey.

Pitts met him when Lindsey was rookie working with the Gilchrist County Sheriff’s Office.

They knocked down doors together, he said, and Lindsey was a “good kid.”

“My time was rather short with him but I knew him as a man with strong character; he was strong-willed, had good ethics — always happy to help,” Pitts said. “He was a good brother, and he was always there to back you up.”

Pitts, who now works at as a registered nurse at UF Health Shands Hospital, said when he heard the news about the men, he left work because he felt sick and “couldn’t think about anything else.”

“I just spent the whole day in shock and in sorrow,” he said. “Just a lot of emotions.”

Emotion was painted candidly on the faces of those in attendance of the funeral Tuesday.

Adding to an already-sad feeling, a lone trumpeter, who would later play taps, could be heard playing scales to warm up his horn in the distance.

The high-pitch squeal of bagpipes could also be heard — the sound of lost deputies.

The two deputies arrived in hearses and were escorted past their patrol vehicles and under a tent, something customary at law enforcement funerals, said Sgt. Brett Rhodenizer with the Alachua County Sheriff’s Office.

A 21-gun salute, many prayers and tears later, the funeral services ended at about 3 p.m., after the men’s “final call,” a symbolic dispatch call made to retire them from service.

The call was heard by hundreds who were in attendance.

“Sgt. Ramirez, may you rest in peace knowing that your strength and courage will live on in your family, your legacy will be carried on in your children and your honor will continue on with us,” said a dispatcher.

“Deputy Lindsey, may you rest in peace knowing that your light will continue to shine in this world where you left your mark while your family continues to carry on your legacy,” added the dispatcher.

“This is the end of watch for the final time.”

But Gregory was convinced Tuesday wasn’t the end for the heroes.

“Taylor. Noel. This is not goodbye,” he said. “This is until we all meet again.”