Community holds vigil for fallen law enforcement officers

Published: Jul. 1, 2022 at 11:13 PM EDT
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PRESTONSBURG, Ky. (WSAZ) - Down the street from where the mass shooting happened that killed Capt. Ralph Frasure, Deputy William Petry, and Officer Jacob Chaffins in Allen, Kentucky, a vigil was held at Old Time Country Church.

Joshua Ratliff, who’s a chaplain, brought together a small group to pray for their small eastern Kentucky community.

“In times like this the self-reliance becomes shock and people become more scared,” Ratliff said. “Being a first responder myself, that is to honor them as heroes, to honor them as not just a person out here doing their job, but someone who is risking everything they have, and this shows this can happen at any time.”

Ratliff said he is also a firefighter and he said he knew all of the law enforcement officers involved including Capt. Ralph Frasure, the officer who was also a resource officer at Prestonsburg High School.

“I know one of them that we have lost was also a resource officer in the school and I know for the high school age kids that was a big impact on them,” Ratliff said.

For now Ratliff prays for peace for the families and friends.

“Patience, peace, openness it is one of the hardest things after an event like this. People want to shut down, they want to find blame, they want to find a reason,” Ratliff said.

Pastor Roger Rowe of Old Time Country Church also joined in the vigil.

“I known them real well. I used to be a deputy coroner in this county and I worked with state police on numerous occasions,” Rowe said.

He said he knew the steadfast faith of the officers involved.

“They can rest in comfort knowing where their loved ones are today. I hope they can take that as a comfort,” Rowe said.

Rowe said each day, their church will be a place of refuge for anyone who might need comfort.

“Keep us in your thoughts and prayers. Keep the families in your thoughts and prayers,” Ratliff said.

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