WEST HOLLYWOOD—A funeral service was held Saturday, January 25 for a fallen deputy who died earlier this month assisting an elderly woman across the street.
The service for Amber Leist, 41, was held at 11:00 a.m. at Mosaic Church located on 7107 Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood where her family, colleagues and friends attended.
On January 12, Leist was returning to her vehicle after helping an elderly woman who tripped and fell across the street. Once she was struck Leist was taken to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center where she succumbed to her injuries.
Sheriff Alex Villanueva, who was at the service Saturday said:
“Since her passing, I’ve come to find out that she left a gigantic void in the hearts of many in our department, particularly those at West Hollywood station.” He continued, “Amber’s commitment to service is a reflection of what the men and women of the sheriff’s department do every day.”
Villanueva informed the public that a psychologist has been assigned to the department to help West Hollywood personnel cope with Leist’s death.
A candlelight vigil was held for Leist January 14, two days after she passed. The vigil was held at the intersection of Whitsett Avenue and Riverside Drive in Valley Village where she was originally hit. Leslie Menaha, who is the woman Leist helped the day she was killed told Fox 11, “She saved my life, I wish I could have saved hers.” Menaha attended the candlelight vigil alongside Leist’s father Daniel.
Daniel told NBC 4 during the vigil, “This is the most heart-rending thing you could ever experience. You never think you’re going to lose your baby. But Amber came into this department and she knew what she had to do. She made the ultimate sacrifice, and she knew that going in, she knew that. And I couldn’t be more prouder. Her life ended as she lived her life — serving others.”
Leist leaves behind her parents and two sons one 17 and one 20. She was a 12-year veteran of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.