CHILHOWIE, Va. (WDBJ) - With flags flying at half-staff and messages like ‘Fly High Trooper Dowell’ glowing on nearly every corner, it’s clear the small town of Chilhowie is hurting.
"It's been very devastating," said lifelong resident Betty Blevins. "We are a close-knit community, a small community as you can see, and it's just been so hard."
Blevins helped drive shuttles on Friday for the memorial services of Trooper Lucas Dowell.
Dowell died Tuesday after being shot while executing a search warrant in Farmville.
His memorial drew law enforcement from around the nation, from Arizona to New York.
"It just kind of breaks your heart, you know, to know that someone's life has been taken," said Capt. Thornell King of the Georgia State Patrol. "At any time, why is it OK to take someone's life, to take a law enforcement's life? We're out there to protect and to serve. We don't want to do anything less and nothing more but to protect and serve the people."
The strong turnout from within the community itself was no surprise to Blevins.
"It's just how our people support our people and our law enforcement we respect very much, and we pray for them every day," she said.
For many in law enforcement, this week has been a chilling reminder of the type of sacrifice each one swore to make.
"Unfortunately, there's bad things that happen every day, and thank God there's good men like him that's willing to answer that call," said Capt. Ron Arthur of West Virginia State Police.
The funeral for Trooper Dowell will be held on Saturday at 11 a.m. at the Chilhowie Christian Church.