The emotional farewell for Deputy Joseph Matuskovic began Sunday evening as hundreds of people from all over the Low Country came to pay their respects at his viewing.
“That badge was viciously murdered by a coward,” said Deputy Sheriff Chris Wells.
On Sunday night over a thousand people from all over the country made their way to West Ashley to pay their respects to a deputy who many say was one of the best.
“He was a trainer, he was an FTO, a driving instructor…just an overall good person, you know? And to lose somebody like that…”
Deputy Sheriff Chris Wells of the Charleston County Sheriff’s Office was one of hundreds of the members of law enforcement who came to the viewing on Sunday. Wells spoke to News 2 about his friend and fellow deputy. “After everybody is gone and you go home and you’re just sitting there and you think about everything that went on. I was with Joe in the emergency room before he passed, and like I said, I’ve been doing this job for a very long time, and I’ll never get that out of my mind. It’s just something you can’t forget.”
In times like these the strength and commitment of those who risk their lives for the public’s safety is so apparent. The huge outpouring of support was shown on Sunday night.
“When something as tragic as this happens, it brings everyone together. I mean I’ve seen people from Chicago, New York, people coming from Greenville County. People from all over the United States are going to come here and they didn’t even know Joe – but they knew that he wore the badge.”
Cynthia Wescott is a Crime Analyst for the Charleston County Sheriff’s Office and explained, “We are going to let our memories bring us comfort.”
Matuskovic was only 43-years-old. He was a 17-year police veteran and is the first deputy killed in the line of duty since 1993.
Deputy Matuskovic’s funeral will be held at 10:00a.m. Monday morning at the Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church in West Ashley.