116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
The Ely Fire Department and other Iowa fire and emergency service crews will hold a procession through Ely Saturday to honor Robert McFarland, a lieutenant with the volunteer fire department who was killed at his job as a correctional officer Tuesday at Anamosa State Penitentiary.
'All members of the public are encouraged to pay tribute to our fallen hero,” according to the city's Facebook page.
The procession will start at 1 p.m. on State Street/Ely Road and turn right on Rock Island Drive. Fire crews will take a left onto Pacific Street, followed by another left on Banner Valley Drive. The procession will pass the Ely Fire Station and continue to Dows Street, where it will turn left toward downtown. The final turn will be right onto State Street.
People who wish to witness the procession are asked to park on Main and Dows streets instead of other parts of the route.
McFarland's public visitation is from 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday at Brosh Chapel and the Avacentre in Cedar Rapids. A celebration of life service is Monday at 1 p.m. at Antioch Christian Church in Marion. Burial will follow in the Czech National Cemetery. Guests are asked to wear masks and practice social distancing.
McFarland, 46, of Ely, and Lorena Schulte, 50, of Cedar Rapids, were killed in a failed escape attempt by two inmates at the Anamosa prison Tuesday.
Michael Dutcher, 28, and Thomas Woodard, 39, each have been charged with two counts of first-degree murder, second-degree kidnapping and attempted murder.
McFarland was married and had three sons, according to his obituary. He started working as a correctional officer at the prison in October 2008 and joined the Ely Fire Department in 2017. A GoFundMe page has been set up to help the family.
Gov. Kim Reynolds on Friday ordered all flags in Iowa be lowered to half-staff Monday from sunrise to sunset to honor Schulte and McFarland.
A rosary service for Schulte will be at 3 p.m. Sunday at the Legacy Center at Murdoch-Linwood in Cedar Rapids. A public visitation will follow until 6 p.m. Private family service and burial will be held.
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