Comfort, TX – Kendall County Sheriff’s Office (KCSO) Sergeant Matthew Johnson died at home on Friday, following a year-long battle with colon cancer, according to his department.
Sgt. Johnson, 44, passed away peacefully, surrounded by his family and friends, the KCSO said in a Facebook post on Sunday.
“I think everybody is doing as well as can be," Sheriff Al Auxier told KSAT on Saturday. "I will tell you that without any question, there will need to be a time of healing. It's a pretty good hit to take."
The community rallied around the veteran deputy during his hard-fought battle, and held fundraisers to help support him and his family.
In a Facebook post on June 13, Sgt. Johnson told his followers that he had just received the devastating news that the cancer was causing his liver to fail.
With tears in his eyes, the doctor said he likely had only about 10 days to live, the sergeant wrote.
“My brothers and sisters in Christ we have had a great journey,” Sgt. Johnson continued. “I love each and every [one of] you. I’m honored to be part of this journey with y’all.”
He made his final post on June 23.
“I’m blessed with so many friends,” he said simply.
Sgt. Johnson graduated from the San Antonio College Police Academy in 2001, and served multiple agencies during his 20-year law enforcement career, according to the KCSO’s Facebook post.
Family friend Tanya Cahen Stevens said that Sgt. Johnson fought “the most courageous and faithful battle against Stage 4 Colon Cancer” that she had ever seen, according to her Facebook post.
“Matt was a kind, loving, gentle soul who was an incredible inspiration to everyone he met,” she added.
Ingram Police Chief Byron Griffin described Sgt. Johnson as a “great man” who knew what it meant to be “a true selfless servant,” according to his Facebook post.
“And I, personally, am a better man for having known him,” Chief Griffin said. “Please keep Matt's family, both blood and blue, in your prayers as they move through this trying time.”
Sgt. Johnson leaves behind his wife, Shelli, as well as his son, Gavin, and his three grandchildren.
He is also survived by his brother, parents, nephews and great niece.
Sgt. Johnson will be laid to rest on July 13, and asked that those who attend his memorial service to wear “celebratory” attire, the department noted.
“Wear your favorite Sports Jersey, your favorite fishing shirt, bright colors, or whatever you feel is festive!” his wife wrote. “That is what Matthew wanted!"
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Kendall County Sheriff’s Sergeant Matthew Johnson, both blood and blue. Thank you for your service.
Rest easy, hero. We’ll hold the line from here.