Officer killed in Lakeland motorcycle crash was a veteran with sons in the military

A Lakeland police officer who died Thursday morning in a motorcycle crash leaves behind a legacy of service to his community and his country.

Officer Paul Dunn, 50, was a US Marine Corps veteran who joined law enforcement after leaving the military.

Dunn worked for five years for Lakeland police as a member of their traffic unit; before that, he worked for the Polk County Sheriff's Office for 12 years.

"Paul raised his hand and volunteered more than most," Lakeland Police Chief Ruben Garcia told FOX 13. “It strikes home. This is a loss of a family member. This was a fine officer who worked this community every day.”

Related: Lakeland police officer dies in motorcycle crash 

Officer Paul Dunn (Lakeland Police Dept.)

Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd said his office was also mourning Dunn's death.

"When it's one of your personal family, this is our family ... We feel the same for the loss of this police officer, whether he wears a blue uniform or green uniform," Judd said.

Garcia said Dunn leaves behind his wife, who is a detective for the agency, and three adult children: one daughter, and two sons who currently serve in the military.

"Please keep Officer Dunn's family and all those who loved him in your thoughts and prayers as we are grieving this huge loss to our agency and our community," Lakeland police said in a tribute on Facebook.