NEW ORLEANS — NOPD Second District Commander Doug Eckert was laid to rest Friday, receiving a ceremonial ‘Final Salute’ from fellow officers along the way.
Eckert, 56, was the commander of the district for the past five years, the last two of which he served while realizing he was under a terminal diagnosis for kidney cancer.
Eckert was well-liked and well-respected by his peers as well as those who served under him and his bosses. He had been encouraged to step down and rest, but that wasn’t what he wanted to do.
“He was sick, but he worked through it,” said Eric Hessler of the Police Association of New Orleans. “Meanwhile, he was fighting his illness. That was just his character. He was going to make sure the right thing was done. And, he did right by the city, his job and his family, even up until the end.”
Eckert’s career saw him move swiftly through the ranks as he showed, early on, that he had what it took to be a superior officer.
“I had to congratulate him on the investigation he had done,” said Hessler. “It was a difficult investigation and he did everything as well as could be expected by a 20-year veteran. And he was a young kid at the time.”