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How to help the children of the slain Oakland police officers

As planning gets underway for a large public funeral Friday, trust funds have been set up to benefit the children of three of the four officers who died in Saturday's gun battles.

Among them, the four Oakland police officers who died in the line of duty Saturday left behind devastated families and seven children in several East Bay communities. The Oakland Police Officers Association has set up three accounts on behalf of these children.

Meanwhile, Oakland city and police officials, in consultation with the officers’ families, are planning a large public funeral for the four officers. It will take place 11 a.m. Friday at Oracle Arena. Expecting large crowds—officials are advising people who wish to attend to arrive early.

The officers killed were: Sgt. Erv Romans, 43, of Danville; Sgt. Dan Sakai, 35, of Castro Valley; Sgt. Mark Dunakin, 40, of Tracy and formerly of Pleasanton; and Officer John Hege, 41, of Concord.

Romans, of Danville, was a former Marine Corps drill sergeant who joined the Oakland Police Department in 1996 and became a member of the SWAT team. He leaves behind three children.

Dunakin grew up in Pleasanton and is a 1987 graduate of Foothill High School. Dunakin started as a police officer in Oakland in 1991. He was a traffic sergeant who also leaves behind three children.

Dan Sakai, who joined the department in 2000, had a 4-year-old daughter.

Hege, a motorcycle officer, graduated from Saint Mary's College. He didn’t have any children.

You can make a contribution to the trust funds for these children in two ways, by wire transfer or by check.

Wire transfers can be made directly to the following Merrill Lynch accounts: The Romans Children's Family Trust, Acct. No. 204-04066; The Dunakin Children's Family Trust, Acct. No. 204-04065; The Sakai Family Trust, Acct. No. 204-04064.

Individual checks can also be made out to the families and mailed to the Oakland Police Officer's Association, Attn: Rennee Hassna, 555 5th St., Oakland, CA, 94607. Make checks payable to the Romans Children's Family Trust; the Dunakin Children's Family Trust; the Sakai Family Trust.