HORRY COUNTY, SC (WBTW) – The Horry County Sheriff’s Department honors a fallen hero who was shot while trying to help a man and woman arguing 14 years ago.
Lieutenant Randy Gerald was shot and killed when he stopped for what he believed was a traffic accident in a parking lot along Hwy 701 at approximately 6:30 p.m. December 29, 2001.
The Horry County Sheriff’s Office reports Lt. Gerald was returning home after his shift at the J. Reuben Long Detention Center, still wearing his uniform, in his personal car when he observed a man and woman arguing. As he attempted to find out what was wrong, the male opened fire, fatally wounding him.
The shooter then attempted to kill the woman, who was the man’s girlfriend, as the two fled in separate cars. The shooter was apprehended approximately 24 hours later after a massive manhunt. The shooter was convicted of murdering Lt. Gerald and sentenced to life without the possibility of parole.
The sheriff’s office posted a memorial photo of Lt. Gerald on its Facebook page Tuesday afternoon saying, “We miss you Randy, we will never forget!” Lt. Gerald had been a member of the Horry County Sheriff’s Department for 13 years.
The Horry County Sheriff’s Office Honor Guard was formed in December 2001, after the death of Lt. Gerald. The Honor Guard is a volunteer assignment for which officers have to compete to be assigned to the unit. It consists of a ten officer unit. The Guards primary responsibility is to honor Law Enforcement officers by attending police funerals. Other duties include: representing the Sheriff’s Office at public events, funerals, memorial services, parades, posting of national colors and special events. The Honor Guard reflects the highest tradition of Law Enforcement, professionalism, integrity, dignity and respect.