Covington Co. sheriff's deputy killed in off-duty motorcycle accident
Opp, AL (WSFA) - Along a stretch of Highway 84 in Andalusia Thursday morning, deputies with the Covington County Sheriff's Office brought Sgt. Larry Smith's remains to the Foreman-Brown Funeral Home.
"He was soft spoken and easy-going," said Sheriff Dennis Meeks.
Larry Smith was off-duty Wednesday evening when he and his Pam decided they wanted to enjoy their passion of riding their motorcycle. They headed out on West Cummings Avenue in Opp near the Country Club. The Smiths were out joyriding, on the way to see a friend to show off the bike.
"Once he veered off the road, he just lost control," Meeks explained.
Just before the crash Sgt. Smith had a coughing spell and lost control of his motorcycle. He struck a tree about 100 feet off the road.
"Last week he had gone to the doctor for a cold, and that cough came over him," the sheriff said.
Smith died at Mizell Memorial Hospital. Mrs. Smith was treated and released. For the Covington County Sheriff's Department, this one really hurts.
17 months ago the force lost deputy Heath Kelley who died in the line of duty. Kelley collided with another vehicle while responding to an emergency call. And now this. Sheriff Meeks has been the sheriff for nine years in Covington County and never thought he would be dealing with two losses in a relatively short amount of time.
"It really knocks you to your knees," he admitted.
Smith was a 6-year veteran patrolman of the sheriff's department. Before joining the team, he worked as a police officer in Opp. Smith, 47, was just one month away from getting a promotion to the investigative division, a promotion he knew nothing about. The sheriff was going to surprise him.
A funeral will be held at the First Baptist Church in Andalusia at 11 a.m. Saturday.
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