Fulton County community grieves after Sheriff Bobby Hopper’s death

Fulton County is grieving the loss of their Sheriff Bobby Hopper.  Hopper died Saturday night at a hospital in Paducah after a long fight with colon cancer.  He was 66 and was the Fulton County sheriff for 22 of those years.

The Fulton County Sheriff’s Office is quiet and Chief Deputy Robby Woods says he has trouble imagining what it will be like without his boss, but more so his friend Bobby Hopper. Woods says, “He was a friend first it was his responsibility he’d look at it like that.”

Woods says Hopper wanted you to address him in a certain way.  “We didn’t have to say Sheriff Hopper, nothing like that. We say, ‘Hey Bobby can I talk to you a minute?’"

And his door was always open. Woods says Hopper cared about everyone and he would always make time for you.  "If someone just wanted to talk to him, he was there for them always. He never turned anybody back.”

Jim Somerfield knew Hopper well. “As a kid he would catch you doing something and say go home.  He was one of those types of people," he said. 

Woods knows he and the rest of the office will grieve the loss of their leader, but it’s Bobby’s friendship they’ll miss the most.

Woods says, “He was always there. He was always there if you needed somebody.”

Per Kentucky state statute, the judge executive will appoint an acting sheriff. That sheriff will service until the county can elect a new sheriff in November 2018. Sheriff Hopper’s funeral arrangements are not yet complete.

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