GREENVILLE, Ky. (WEHT) Muhlenberg County continues to pay its respects to Sheriff Ricki Allen a day after his death.

He passed away after what Kentucky State Police describe as a possible medical issue.

Throughout the day, people have been placing flowers, balloons, and even baseballs on, or near the cruiser outside the Muhlenberg County Courthouse. Sheriff Allen’s family say they’ll remember him for how he treated others on and off duty.

“I hope everyone remembers him for how great a man he was,” said Jake Allen, Sheriff Allen’s son.

He was known as sheriff, a state trooper, a coach.

“I was kind of sad about it. I thought he was a real good sheriff. I hate to lose him,” said Michael Johnson of Browder. 

To Sheriff Allen’s son, Jake, he knew him best as dad.

“He was the best dad I could ask for,” Jake recalled. “Always there for me, caring, helps with anything I need. He was always there for me.” He, and his friends, were at the memorial for his dad this afternoon, while keeping his memories of him close to his heart and head.

“It was in my dad’s truck,” he said, describing the Muhlenberg County Sheriff hat he wore Wednesday afternoon. “Every time he’d wear a hat, it was either a baseball hat or wear this when he went out. He kept it on top of his vest in the back seat.”

Sheriff Allen started his career as a Kentucky State Trooper for nearly three decades before being elected Sheriff about two years ago. He was also a school resource officer at several Muhlenberg County schools, keeping kids safe and helping with activities.

“Ricki is a passionate person, always wants to make a difference. He never made himself above anyone else. He was a friend to everyone. If you knew Ricki, he would consider you his best friend,” said Carla Embry of Muhlenberg Co. Public Schools.

When he wasn’t on duty, he was on the diamond, helping coach area youth baseball teams Jake and his friends were on. As his family mourns, Jake remembers how the sheriff he knew as dad helped everyone.

“Best dad ever. I don’t know how to explain it. He always there for me, do anything,” he said.

Jake adds he and his family appreciate the community’s support, adding his dad would have been flattered to see the attention.

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(This story was originally published on September 30, 2020)