Local News

Family, Friends Remember Fallen Officer

Posted April 17, 1999 7:00 a.m. EDT

— Friends, family and law enforcement officers from across North Carolina said their final goodbyes Sunday to Detective Bill Weatherly, the Warren County officer shot to death Thursday.

At his funeral, Weatherly's fellow deputies said he was the kind of person who put a smile on everybody's face. They remembered some of those good times, and at the same time, faced the horrible reality of how dangerous their jobs can be.

Fellow deputies say Weatherly died in the line of duty, while attempting to serve a warrant at the home of 19-year-old Lawrence Attaway Thursday morning. Attaway is charged with firing the fatal shotgun blast.

For the paramedics who tried to save Weatherly's life the tragedy is particularly poignant.

"It makes you think, it really does," said John Nelson, a paramedic who treated Weatherly. "I'm feeling for everybody -- the family, the folks who were on the scene and who saw what we saw."

But as Nelson and those who had worked alongside Weatherly mourn a life lost, they remember the spirit his life brought to theirs.

"The best part I remember about him was his personality. He always had a smile. He was always laughing," said Richard Tucker a North Carolina Wildlife officer.

To celebrate this detective's life, Rep. Eva Clayton said, it's time for everyone to say thanks.

"Not only thank you for the life that's been given, but for the lives of those living who put their lives on the line and make our lives so secure," Clayton said.

It has been one month since many many of those same law officers gathered for the funeral of Lt. Tonya Gillikin, an Enfield police officer who was also shot and killed in the line of duty.

Detective Weatherly's body will now be taken to Elizabeth City, where family members will hold a memorial service Tuesday.