Local News

October 3, 2013

Friend seeks to honor late deputy

It has been almost two years since Jacky Head, a deputy and EMT (emergency medical technician) in Murray County, died unexpectedly.

And there still isn’t a headstone on his grave.

Susan Stanley is determined to change that.

“He was one of the best friends you could ever ask for,” said Stanley, who worked with Head at Murray County Emergency Medical Services (EMS). “The thoughts of him being out there that long without a headstone brings me to tears.”

Stanley is heading a fundraising effort to pay for a headstone for her former co-worker and friend. She said she always thought of him as her partner, even though they often also worked with other people.

This Saturday the movie “Smokey and the Bandit” will be shown at Eton City Park at 7 p.m. Admission is free. Donations will be taken, and T-shirts will be sold for $10. Proceeds from the T-shirts and concession sales will go toward the grave marker for Head.

There is also a memorial fund for Head set up at Comtrust Federal Credit Union in Chatsworth.

“We want everyone to bring their lawn chairs and blankets and have some good old-fashioned family fun,” Stanley said. “It will be like a drive-in.”

“Smokey and the Bandit” was one of Head’s favorite movies.

When Head, 46, didn’t show up for work on Feb. 20, 2012, co-workers went to his home and found he had died. He had served in the Marine Corps and was a deputy with the Murray County Sheriff’s Office and worked part time for Murray EMS.

“He was a hoot,” said Ceecee Headrick, a paramedic with Murray EMS, who has helped with the fundraising efforts. “He was your typical police officer, Marine, very gruff. But if you knew him, he was a big teddy bear. Most of us knew his devious smile and knew he was up to something, but people that didn’t know him was scared to death of him. He would give you the shirt off his back to help everybody though.”

“We miss him,” she said. “He has a lot of friends and family who miss him.”

Stanley said they are still trying to work on a design and price for the headstone. She’s also hoping to confirm his military status and rank. Veterans qualify for a free grave marker that Stanley hopes will be used at the foot of his grave.

For the headstone, she says she knows Head wanted one like the one for his son who passed away — black with a painted wooded scene and cabin.

“It’s coming up on the two-year anniversary of his death,” Stanley said. “My partner deserves a headstone ... If Jacky liked you, Jacky liked you, and if he didn’t, you knew it. He was a very straightforward person. My years there working with Jacky were phenomenal. I miss them so much. I miss Jacky.”

Stanley said she is thankful for all the support she has received so far with this project — the people and businesses that have donated for Saturday night and the city of Eton for allowing them to host the movie at the park.

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