The Richmond Register

May 25, 2013

Hundreds pay tribute as Sheriff Combs is laid to rest

Register Staff Report

MADISON COUNTY — Dozens of his fellow law enforcement officers from around Kentucky came to Church on the Rock on Saturday morning to pay a last tribute to Madison County Sheriff Jerry Combs, who was laid to rest after a funeral at the church.

Flags held by members of the Kentucky chapter of the Patriot Guard fluttered in the breeze as they led the funeral procession on their motorcycles from the church on US 25 north of Berea to the Combs Family Cemetery.

Many officers from every law enforcement agency within Madison County were present at the funeral, including the sheriff's department, Richmond Police Department, Berea Police Department and Kentucky State Police. They were joined by other first responders, and by several dozen of Combs' friends and relatives, filling the church.

Combs, 61, a veteran Berea police officer who elected to his first term as sheriff in 2010, collapsed and later died Monday evening of an apparent heart attack while working in his parents’ garden.

After receiving a liver transplant in October, Combs appeared to be making a speedy recovery, making his sudden death a shock to his family, friends and colleagues.

Madison County Judge/Executive Kent Clark issued an executive order Tuesday appointing Chief Deputy Mike Coyle to serve as interim sheriff until a someone is appointed to fill the remainder of Combs’ term. A new sheriff will be elected in 2014.