Matthew Hunt's lifelong dream was to become a police officer. In October 2017, he finally became a constable and started his work on the frontline.
It was on that frontline - during what should have been a routine traffic stop - that he was killed.
The 28-year-old was shot multiple times in a West Auckland street, and died soon after.
His heartbroken family are now planning his funeral, which could be delayed to allow family and friends to return from overseas.
Covid-19 restrictions mean every person who comes back has to self-isolate for 14 days, which may mean the funeral does not go ahead until they are all cleared.
His colleagues are now investigating his alleged murder.
And everyone that knew Hunt is feeling the pain and senselessness of his death.
Yesterday morning, family members visited Reynella Dr in Massey, the scene of the fatal shooting.
At the same time, the family of a 24-year-old South Auckland man were sitting in the back of the Waitākere District Court where he appeared before a Justice of the Peace charged with Hunt's murder.
He is also charged with the attempted murder of a second officer he allegedly shot, and wounding a member of the public who was hit by a car during the fracas.
He has been granted interim name suppression and was remanded in custody until his next appearance in the High Court at Auckland next month.
Police Commissioner Andrew Coster spent time with Hunt's family yesterday, after first meeting them on Friday evening.
He said supporting them was a priority.
Hunt was raised on the Hibiscus Coast and attended Orewa College.
"It was his life-long dream to be a police officer," a statement from his family revealed.
"Before joining the police he completed a BA in criminology and worked at Auckland Prison as a case manager.
"Matthew was a person of great integrity."
Hunt graduated from Police College as part of Wing 312 in October 2017.
He spent the majority of his career working in frontline roles based out of the Orewa and Helensville stations.
He recently moved to work in the Waitematā Road Policing Team.
Just before 10.30am on Friday, Hunt and his colleague chanced upon a car that was of interest to police.
They signalled for it to stop with lights and sirens but the driver took off.
The officers lost sight of the car but found it crashed on Reynella Dr soon after.
As they approached the vehicle, a man allegedly got out brandishing a firearm and started shooting, before leaving in a second car.
The accused was located on Friday evening.
The scene examination at Reynella Dr could take days as forensic and crash experts and detectives work to piece together exactly what happened there on Friday.
Bunches of flowers, a ruler and handwritten messages have been left on the corner of Reynella Dr and Gallony Ave - as close to the scene of the shooting as the public is allowed.
Late yesterday afternoon, about 100 people gathered on a hilly reserve overlooking the police cordon. Prayers were spoken and songs sung in memory of Hunt.
Along with several bunches of flowers placed at the cordon was a letter reading: "To the family of the officer - I give my respect & condolence to the police force and thank you for keeping us safe.
"Our condolences go to the family and colleagues of the officer. This outcome should never be a result of a career that keeps people safe.
"From Jamal, Mohammed, mum & dad."
A resident on the street spoke to the Herald on Sunday about trying to help the injured officers.
He lives nearby the shooting site and saw an officer lying on the ground - so grabbed a first aid kit and sprinted to help him.
"It was a pretty sad day, that turned to anger late in the day," he said.
"Some guy has gone to do his job and someone decided he had other plans, it's not nice."
Before he could get to the officer, another police patrol car arrived on scene.
It is understood police are working with Hunt's family on plans for a funeral with full honours.
The Police Association has set up a fund to support Hunt's family, with 100 per cent of donations going directly to them.
Do you want to support the Hunt family?
If you would like to make a donation to the family of Constable Matthew Hunt, killed in the line of duty on Friday June 19, 2020, you can deposit funds into the New Zealand Police Association Charitable Trust account 02 0500 0756808 00.
* Additional reporting Tom Dillane, Luke Kirkness, Chelsea Boyle and Bernard Orsman