Viewing held for former Miami-Dade police director

Robert Parker dies July 22 of self-inflicted gunshot wound to head

OPA-LOCKA, Fla. – A viewing is being held Friday for the former Miami-Dade police director who took his life last week.

Family and friends will gather at the New Baptist Church in Opa-locka at 6 p.m. to pay their respects to Robert Parker, who was found dead July 22 next to a canal near his home in northwest Miami-Dade County.

The medical examiner ruled Parker's death to be a suicide due to a single gunshot wound to the head.

Parker joined the Miami-Dade Police Department in 1976 and ascended to the position of director in 2004 after predecessor Carlos Alvarez was elected Miami-Dade County mayor. Parker served as director for five years before retiring in 2009. He had served with the Miami-Dade Police Department for 33 years.

Parker's funeral is scheduled for Saturday morning at the Florida International University Arena in Miami. He will later be laid to rest at Vista Memorial Gardens in Hialeah.

Parker is survived by his wife Veronica, his mother Mary, three brothers, three children and two grandchildren.

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