The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department held a funeral service for motorcycle Deputy Thomas Albanese Friday, honoring the seven-year veteran of the department who was killed last month in a collision in a Lakewood while attempting to make a traffic stop.

“Tom’s dream was to become a motorcycle deputy,” said Pastor Lincoln Dial who gave the opening and closing eulogy for Albanese. “Tom was a real hero.”

Those who spoke about Albanese life and legacy included Dial, Sheriff Alex Villanueva, Capt. Phillip R. Marquez, Lt. Jodi L. Hutak and Thomas’s father, David Albanese Sr.

“The loss of Tom will forever be with us,” said Marquez, who paused frequently during his speech, evidently emotional.

Albanese, 41, served as a U.S. Marine for one tour in Saudi Arabia and three in Iraq—a total of 28 months in the desert—before leaving the Marines in 2010 to focus on his family.

Albanese joined the Sheriff’s Department in July 2013 when he was 35 and became a deputy two years later. He was remembered by his colleagues as extremely hard working, dedicated and respectful.

“Tom was a man of few words, but when he spoke, we listened because we knew it would be honest, genuine and from the heart,” said Hutak. “He worked hard. That’s just what he did.”

Albanese was killed around 9 a.m. on Feb. 25 when he entered into the intersection of Paramount and Del Amo boulevards while trying to pull over a black sedan. A Mercedes-Benz turning in the intersection collided with him, throwing him from his motorcycle, authorities said.

At the time, Villanueva called the incident an “unfortunate accident,” adding that it was a “tough day for everybody.”

A motorcade of law enforcement vehicles, led by motorcycles, arrived at the Calvary Chapel Golden Springs in Diamond Bar about 10:30 this morning and Albanese’s flag-draped casket was escorted, along with his family, into the chapel as lines of deputies stood at attention. Many more watched the service online.

Albanese is survived by his wife and two sons ages 7 and 11.

LASD deputy Tom Albanese photographed with his wife and two sons. Screen shot taken from live-streamed funeral service.

City News Service contributed to this report.