KOKOMO, Ind. (March 22, 2016) - For the first time Tuesday, the officer that was shot and wounded alongside Deputy Carl Koontz while executing a search warrant Sunday morning spoke to the media.
Sergeant Jordan Buckley grew emotional when speaking about his fellow deputy Tuesday.
“Deputy Koontz sacrificed his life beside me, which is the reason I stand here today,” he said. “Yesterday, after being released from the hospital, I walked into my house to my wife and kids and Carl will not be doing that.”
Buckley was released from IU Methodist hospital in Indianapolis Monday afternoon and is still recovering from a gunshot wound.
“His legacy will live forever and he will always be remembered as Howard County 3476,” said Corporal Justin Markley who read a statement on behalf of the Koontz family Tuesday.
“He just backed me up two weeks ago. He’s just meticulous; he’s just a good man. Howard County has lost a great soul,” said Corporal Keith Myers, a friend and fellow deputy of Koontz.
It’s clear that Koontz left a great impact on Howard County; a growing memorial Tuesday surrounded Koontz’ squad car, which was parked front and center outside the Howard County Sheriff’s office.
Flowers were even delivered from the New York Yankees to the sheriff’s office to honor the 27-year-old man.
“It’s been very surreal since we got that call. We’re still trying to process this,” said Detective Rod Shafer, a friend of Koontz.
Some of Koontz’ closest friends on the force are coping now with a quiet department. They are missing his service, but more importantly, his smile.
“He was a great friend and also just a great husband and a father to his son,” said Deputy Jacob Gibson.
“We’re a smaller department and that’s what makes it even more difficult, because we all know each other, we know each other’s wives, we know each other’s family, friends. We’re all connected in some way shape or form,” said Shafer.
A ceremony to honor Koontz will be held Tuesday, March 29, 2016, at Northwestern High School.
Visitation is Monday, March 28, from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Northwestern High School.
The funeral is Tuesday, March 29, at 11 a.m. at the high school. Burial will follow at Albright Cemetery in Kokomo.