Retired Chief Deputy Dies In Fire [GALLERY]

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By Emily Johnson
October 25, 2013

Thomasville, GA - The Thomas County Sheriff R. Carlton Powell stood silent as he looked over the red house that belonged to his long time friend Walter Hadley. Hadley was a retired Chief Deputy for the Thomas County Sheriff's Office when he died at the age of 85 from a house fire. He started working for the Thomas County Sheriff's Office in 1967 and retired in 2010.

Walter "Kiser" Hadley as his friends new him was a big contribution to the Thomasville community. Phone calls started coming into the sheriff's office late yesterday from people wanting confirmation of the sad news. "The phone calls that I started getting on my phone from different people in the community, "oh my tell me this isn't true", "just heard the worst news" and unfortunately I had to confirm that it was true," Captain Steven Jones of the Thomas County Sheriff's Office.

For Sheriff Powell himself the news is hard to understand. "We had to accept the fact that my good friend was no longer with us," said Sheriff Powell. The Sheriff recalls many memories that he Hadley shared, but particularly the time Powell decided to run for sheriff. "At some point I told him that I was going to run for sheriff within a certain date and I'd like for him to run with me as my partner. He and I were basically riding partners in the early years," said Sheriff Powell.

The information on how the fire started and other details about the house fire have not been released. We will update when that information becomes available.

With the recent fire Thomas County Fire Rescue wants people to stay alert of their smoke alarms. They said everyone should have one and if you already have a smoke detector to make sure the batteries are good.

By: WCTV Eyewitness News

Sheriff's officials say retired Deputy Walter Hadley died in house fire last night.

It happened at 17742 highway 319 in Thomas County.

Hadley retired from the sheriff's office in 2010, and had been with the department for 43 years.

A Captain with the sheriff's office says Hadley was well respected in the community.

The fire is still under investigation; stay with WCTV Eyewitness News for more details.

Chief Hadley and Sheriff Powell, 1980

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