Saturday, March 9, 2013
On March 9, 1994, Georgetown Police Maj. Spencer Guerry died as a result of injuries he received when he was shot during a traffic stop.
On Friday, members of the law enforcement community gathered with elected and other officials for a prayer breakfast to remember the man — who, at the age of 37, made the ultimate sacrifice.
The shooting took place at Georgetown Car Wash on Highmarket Street after Guerry pulled a car over that was driven by Georgetown native David Hill.
His widow, Sally Guerry, said the gathering was not a time to mourn but was a celebration of her late husband’s life.
She noted their two sons, Ryan and James, have made public service their career choices, just like their parents. Mrs. Guerry is a teacher at Maryville Elementary School.
Ryan is currently a Graduate Student at East Carolina University in Greenville North Carolina getting his Master's in Public Administration with a concentration in Emergency Management.
James is a South Carolina Highway Patrol trooper.
Ms. Guerry encouraged all the law enforcement officers who were in attendance to “hold your heads high” and “don’t tarnish the badges you have been given.”
Police Chaplain Rob Dewey was the one who received the call to meet with Mrs. Guerry at the hospital on the night her husband was shot, March 7, 1994.
He told the gathering he and Mrs. Guerry became fast friends after the incident and she still uses Twitter to communicate with him when she has questions or concerns.
After the breakfast that took place in the Highmarket Street law enforcement center which is named in Spencer Guerry’s honor, Mrs. Guerry was joined by her son, James as they placed a wreath at a memorial that has been created for her husband at Francis Marion Park on Front Street.
During his 15-year law enforcement career, Guerry worked his way up through the ranks from patrol officer, uniform patrol corporal, staff services sergeant, administration/support lieutenant, Criminal Investigations Division and Uniform Patrol Division captain, and was promoted to deputy chief of police in February 1990.
During this time, Guerry completed the requirements for his master's degree from Central Missouri State University in Warrensburg, Mo., and graduated from the FBI Academy, Class No. 174, in 1993.
In 1995, Hill was found guilty of Guerry’s murder and sentenced to death. He was executed in March 2004.
By Scott Harper