‘He wanted to help people’: Nicholas Co. Deputy remembered after crash

Published: May. 11, 2022 at 7:07 PM EDT
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NICHOLAS COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) - After just over a month on the job, Nicholas County Sheriff’s Deputy Travis Lawson was already showing great potential.

“Very humble, kind, kid,” described Sheriff William Nunley. “Just a staple for someone you’d see would be honest serving as a pillar in the community and loved his country.”

The 22-year-old died in an off-duty motorcycle crash Tuesday just more than a month after he first joined the force.

“Department’s struggling a little bit, it really hasn’t sunk in with a lot of our officers,” Nunley said.

“It’s a tragedy, and it’s really devastating.”

In his 22 years of life, Lawson served many roles in the community including serving as a volunteer firefighter in Nettie and running his own barbershop. Serving in law enforcement, though, became his ultimate dream.

“He was he was hands-on, just a go-getter,” Nunley said. “He wanted to be involved, he wanted to learn, he wanted to do this job, he wanted to help people.”

According to Sheriff Nunley, Lawson overcame several challenges to reach his goal.

He earned the Perseverance Award at the West Virginia State Police Academy at his graduation in April.

“At one point he had a stroke, and it was really unclear if he was going to be able to recover from that,” the sheriff said. “He recovered almost completely fully from that. That took a good deal of time and a lot of strength. Most people probably would have quit with all the medical things he had to face.”

Nunley hopes Lawson’s legacy will serve as a model for all deputies.

“Be a good partner, community member and a good person,” he said. “I think that’s exactly what Travis was.”

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