Dozens Attend Candlelight Vigil in Honor of Fallen Danville Officer
By Timothy Perry
January 19, 2016 - 8:11 PM
DANVILLE - On a bitterly cold January night, dozens of friends and family members of fallen Danville police officer Thomas Cottrell gathered together outside the city's Municipal Building to pay homage to a man that many are calling a hero.
Attendees, wearing coats, hats, and scarves huddled together, holding candles, as temperatures hovered near 10 degrees, telling stories, sharing hugs, crying, laughing, and sharing in the grief and shock that has rocked the small community. Tonight, they mourned loss of a friend, coach, son, brother, father, and upstanding community member.
Cottrell, 34, was found dead outside the building, shortly after dispatchers received a call from the ex-girlfriend of 32 year old Herschel Ray Jones III, stating that Jones had left, was armed, and was seeking to kill a police officer.
Yesterday, as well as today, friends and family took to social media to express their feelings:
"Officer Cottrell was an amazing man", wrote Savannah Phillips in a
Facebook post. "He used to pick on me and I used to pick on him too,
but we both knew its was out of love".
Coy Bissett wrote, "Words cannot describe how I feel about this loss. Tom was a good friend
and a father figure to me for a good portion of my life. You will be
missed Tom Cottrell RIP".
The word "hero", along with numerous pictures of Cottrell could frequently be seen.