Montgomery County, TN – Cheatham County Sheriff’s Office (CCSO) Deputy Stephen Reece died in the line of duty in a two-vehicle collision on Friday.
Deputy Reece, 50, was driving his Ford Explorer patrol SUV when the fatal crash occurred at approximately 2:13 p.m., WSMV reported.
The longtime deputy failed to stop at a stop sign on Oak Plains Road, and was hit by a Ford van as he pulled out onto 41A South, the Tennessee Highway Patrol (THP) said in a preliminary report.
It was unclear whether or not Deputy Reece’s lights or siren were activated at the time, according to WTVF.
The van slammed into the driver’s side of Deputy Reece’s vehicle, and he succumbed to his injuries at the scene, The Tennessean reported.
The driver of the van was also injured in the collision, and was transported to a local hospital with non-life threatening injuries.
A THP statement said he will not face any charges in connection with the fatal collision, according to WSMV.
Deputy Reece served with the Nashville Police Department for at least 18 years before he joined the CCSO in April, Cheatham County Sheriff Mike Breedlove told The Tennessean.
"We are hurting tonight,” Sheriff Breedlove said, according to WTVF. “We'll be hurting for quite some time.”
“He was a professional and one of the most amazing people we've ever had in our office," he added. "He came on ready to teach a lot of the younger officers and was an amazing mentor, and a good husband and father."
Deputy Reece’s sister, Angela Kirby, said that her brother worked in the law enforcement field for over three decades, and that he was also a U.S. Marine Corps veteran, WTVF reported.
"He loved life and was a happy guy and dedicated himself to law enforcement…His blood ran blue," Kirby said. “He was always the rock of the family. He made sure we always had everything we needed.”
Deputy Reece’s close friend and former coworker, Nashville Metro Police Officer Eric Bacon, told WTVF that the longtime lawman inspired others to be better officers.
"He truly wanted to help and you couldn't be a friend of his and not have that wear off on you," Officer Bacon explained.
Deputy Reece leaves behind his wife, Brandy, his daughter, Ali, and his son, Jacob, who is also a Tennessee law enforcement officer, WTVF reported.
He is also survived by his grandchildren, mother, sisters, nieces, and nephews, according to his obituary.
Deputy Reece will be laid to rest on Tuesday.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Cheatham County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Stephen Reece, both blood and blue. Thank you for your service.
Rest easy, hero. We’ll hold the line from here.