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Sheriff’s new truck dedicated to memory of Johnnie Padgett

STANFORD — The Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office has dedicated a new 2020 Dodge Ram patrol truck to the memory of Johnnie Padgett, a longtime county magistrate who died in March after a long battle with cancer.

Sheriff Curt Folger and Deputy Michael Mullins officially dedicated the new white truck, which has Padgett’s picture on the cab’s rear window, during Tuesday’s Lincoln County Fiscal Court meeting at the courthouse.

“Our Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office was privileged to work alongside Johnnie Padgett for 12 years when he was a magistrate serving our county and the people he loved so much … he left us with fond memories and lasting contributions that are evident for all citizens of Lincoln County to see,” said Folger. “Today, the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office has more vehicles, equipment and highly-trained personnel than ever before in their history and that can be attributed to the great leadership and public service commitment of Johnnie Padgett.”

Padgett, who was 63 when he passed away on March 18, 2019, served as the District 3 Magistrate.

“Seldom in life do you find those rare individuals who offer you a smile when you are right and an even bigger smile when you mess up,” Folger continued. “Words cannot express the gratitude we have for that special person who you could turn to any time of the day or night when you needed a comforting hand or a listening ear.”

“Today, we want to dedicate this 2020 Dodge Ram sheriff’s patrol vehicle to our friend, partner and leader, Johnnie Padgett, as a small token of respect for the superb public servant called home far too soon.”

Padgett’s widow, Suzie, his two daughters, Jessica McGuffey and Michelle Amon, and three of his grandchildren, Mason McGuffey, Khloe McGuffey and Kelsi Ruckel, were on hand for the dedication. Also on hand were Lincoln County Judge Jim W. Adams Jr. and Magistrates David Faulkner, Lonnie Pruitt, Jeff Ruckel and Joe Stanley. Ruckel was elected to fill Padgett’s seat.

“May your days ahead be blessed and comforted of knowing the fine man who gave his all for his family and for his friends and for his community is now smiling down and thinking, ‘Wow! Them boys are going to need a lot of help.’ God bless Johnnie Padgett, his family, and God bless Lincoln County,” Folger said.

The new Dodge Ram was purchased for $34,104.72. Of the total cost, $18,316.72 came from the Sheriff’s Office, $10,788 was provided by the fiscal court and $5,000 was donated by Bruce Robbins and Lafayette Engineering inc. of Danville.