‘Just heartbreak’: Cousin of fallen sergeant speaks out after deadly standoff in Watauga County

State News

WATAUGA COUNTY, N.C. — Investigators are working to piece together what led to a deadly standoff at a Watauga County home.

Watauga County Sgt. Chris Ward was responding to the home for a welfare check along with Deputy Logan Fox. They were trying to find someone who didn’t show up for work on Wednesday.

Both were shot when they entered the home.

Ward was killed. We have received no word on the condition of Fox.  

The suspect had reportedly been shooting at law enforcement into the night.

Law enforcement officials said the suspect is dead. It is unclear how the suspect died.

Thursday morning, the fallen sergeant’s second cousin Donna Ward paid her respects at a growing memorial of candles and flowers. She says they come from a law enforcement family, and this loss is devastating.

“Just heartbreak,” she said. “I told her I pray for them each and every day. I’m on my knees each and every day praying for these people. I pray for everybody, but these officers, they have a tough job. I mean they’re out here to serve and protect and people just don’t get it, they don’t,”

Thursday morning, Lexington police tweeted out, “Our hearts go out to the Watauga County Sheriffs Department this morning as they deal with the tragic death Sgt. Chris Ward. ‘Greater love has no one than this that someone lay down their life for their friends'”

And the Rockingham County Sheriff’s Office tweeted, “Our hearts are heavy for the Watauga Sheriff’s Office, Sgt. Ward’s family, and all involved in the deadly standoff in Boone, NC yesterday. Our thoughts and prayer are with you.”

Winston-Salem police joined a law enforcement caravan, bringing Ward’s body to Wake Forest Baptist Health early Thursday morning.

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