HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - Officers of the law in Horry County have attempted to carry out their duties as usual while coming to grips with the loss of one of their own - Deputy Sheriff Tim Causey.
Deputy Sheriff Tim Causey passed away on Sunday morning, May 19 after battling the perfect storm of smoke inhalation and the H1N1 virus. He was placed in a medically-induced coma, from which he never awoke.
Causey was one of the first on the scene to the fire ripping through the Windsor Green apartment complex. He was hospitalized in the following days and transported to the MEdical University of South Carolina where he was treated for over two months.
During that time, his daughter graduated from the Academy of Arts and Technology. His fellow deputies attended the ceremony in his place.
Visitation hours began Tuesday, May 21 at 6 p.m. at the Meares Funeral Home in Mullins.
The funeral for fallen Deputy Tim Causey was held Wednesday, May 22 at 5 p.m. in the Green Sea Floyds High School.
Now, his fellow deputies are dealing with his death.
"Cops have a harder outer shell. We don't like to show emotion, we're around to help others in need. But today - you'll see a different face of emotion," says Sgt. Jeff Benton, a spokesman for the Horry County Sheriff's Office and close friend to Deputy Causey.
The Sheriff's Office had a mandatory meeting for their deputies today to discuss Causey's passing.
"We brought our deputies in this morning because we decided as a family we need to discuss it face to face," explains Sgt. Benton.
Sgt. Benton also explains that Horry County has an assistance program that is free to any employee needing counseling. The Sheriff's Office believes it is important to discuss Causey's death to help their deputies move forward. While they are not related by blood, they are his brothers and sisters in service.
"We may not be crying on the outside. But, I can assure you that many of us, myself included, our hearts...our hearts are saddened. Our hearts are hurting," says Sgt. Benton.
Other agencies are offering to bring in grief counselors for the deputies dealing with the loss.
"They want to be there to show respect to Tim, and they don't even know him," explains Sgt. Benton.
An overwhelming amount of support from all over the country is flooding in to lift up our deputies after one of their own has fallen.
"I have been on the phone all morning with agencies offering horse drawn carriages, honor guards, grief counseling," says Sgt. Benton.
While many of the callers don't even know Tim Causey, they know the sacrifices he made in his job.
"When a police officer passes away, no matter how many officers there are in the United States, it is a tight-knit community," Sgt. Benton says.
Another county is offering to come work in the place of our local deputies so all of his co-workers can attend his funeral.
Sgt. Benton says, "So everyone who works here can be part of the going home of Tim Causey"
Those who stood beside him in service are wearing Mourning Badges.
"It represents a fallen officer. One of our comrades that has been called home," says Sgt. Benton.
While Causey will never again walk the halls, his picture will always remain on the wall of the Horry County Sheriff's Office.
"It will never come down. He will always be part of the HCSO, and his family will always be part of ours."