RUTHERFORD COUNTY, N.C. (WSPA) – By all accounts, Trooper John Horton is being remembered as a family man, dedicated to his job and his community.
Leaders with North Carolina’s State Highway Patrol told 7News that today and the next couple of days are going to be very difficult.
In Rutherford County near the intersection of High Shoals Church Road and Goodes Grove Church Road sits a tight-knit community.
“To see something like this has happened, to be a tragedy, everybody knows him,” said Rutherford County Resident, Connie Fite.
Which makes this that much harder for people like Connie Fite.
“It’s hard for every one of us because we watch out for each other out here, we try to help everybody,” Fite said.
She lives down the street from an intersection where tragedy struck Monday night.
“My husband looked out the door and saw the blue lights and said, it was really bad,” Fite told 7News.
A commander with North Carolina Highway Patrol said it started when trooper John Horton attempted to pull over a vehicle Monday night. He asked for assistance from another trooper, his brother.
While heading that way, law enforcement officials said Trooper James Horton lost control of his car, crashing into his brother and the detained driver.
The Rutherford County Sheriff along with family and close friends of Trooper Horton told 7News, their hearts are broken but said they’re leaning on the community they know to get through this sadness.
Trooper Horton was married to his high school sweetheart, they have six children.
The details of his funeral are still being worked out but the family told 7News, a public memorial will likely be held this week at the Isothermal Community College in Spindale.