Sheriff’s office supervisor aided by inmates after medical emergency has passed away

James Smith. (Source: Contributed)
James Smith. (Source: Contributed)
Updated: Jan. 7, 2019 at 12:21 PM EST
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BLADEN COUNTY, NC (WECT) - A roadside cleanup crew supervisor who was aided by three inmates after having a medical emergency while on duty last week has passed away, the Bladen County Sheriff’s Office announced Monday morning.

“The [sheriff’s office] is mourning this morning after learning of the passing of Mr. James Smith. Please continue to keep his family in your prayers over the next few weeks. This is a huge loss to the sheriff’s office and the citizens of this great county,” the Bladen County Sheriff’s Office said in a Facebook post. “Thank you sir for your service.”

Last week, Smith was supervising three inmates, who were picking up trash along Peanut Road in Elizabethtown, when he suddenly started feeling sick and passed out.

The inmates rushed over to help Smith and called 911, staying by his side until paramedics and law enforcement could arrive at the scene.

Smith was taken to Cape Fear Valley Medical Center in Fayetteville and eventually moved to Duke University Hospital in Durham where doctors in the intensive care unit diagnosed him with having suffered a stroke.

Sheriff’s office officials said Smith passed away early Sunday morning. He was 62 years old.

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