Updated 1 year ago
Two days after a Marion County deputy was shot and killed on the job, people from across the state showed up at Anthony Rakes' visitation to pay their respects.
Rakes may not have known how many lives he touched, but on Friday, people came out in droves to say thank you. A line formed out the door at Bosley Funeral Home. Officers and deputies came from all over the state to say goodbye with family, friends, and strangers alike.
"It's kind of somber. Everybody is just halfway in shock because we're so grieved and so sorrowful that this had to happen in our community," said Carolyn Lynch.
Early Wednesday morning, Rakes stopped to investigate a car parked in the middle of US 68. Police say the driver, Dewayne Shipp, shot him twice in the stomach. Rakes later died in surgery.
"This stuff doesn't happen in small towns. He was just trying to help someone," said Stacy Gadberry.
As people like Lynch and Gadberry said their final goodbyes, many also wanted to know why.
"Some people are scared. If this could just happen out of the blue, early morning hours, who can you trust? Who can you stop to help?" Gadberry said.
As the investigation continues, there will be more questions.
But Friday night was about honoring Rakes and healing together.
"It just takes time. It takes time and support. Supporting one another and letting them know we're feeling for them and supporting them with our love and prayers," Lynch says.
"This young man went for his dreams," Theresa Smothers remembers. "He had compassion and that's what made him a good police officer, was the compassion."
Anthony Rakes was a hero who died doing what he loved.