Hundreds honor fallen Florida sheriff's deputy at service

Highlands County Deputy William Gentry Jr. killed responding to dispute

WFTS-TV image of funeral of Highlands County Deputy William Gentry Jr.

SEBRING, Fla. (AP) - A Florida sheriff's deputy who was killed while responding to a dispute over a cat was laid to rest Tuesday -- on Police Memorial Day.

Hundreds of deputies, police officers and community members gathered to honor Deputy Willaim Gentry Jr., who was shot in the head in Lake Placid on May 6 and died the following day.

"I know we have (the) watch for him on Earth, but he has a watch for us in Heaven," said Lt. Chris Smith with the Highlands County Sheriff's Office. "Though his time of being a field deputy was cut short, it is without question those trained by him will ensure his policing legacy continues on."

The funeral procession for Highlands County Sheriff's Deputy William Gentry began Tuesday morning in the central Florida city of Sebring.

The 40-year-old deputy joined the force in 2005. He responded to a dispute between neighbors over a cat that had been shot May 6. Officials say Gentry was shot when he approached the front door of 69-year-old Joseph Edward Ables.

Ables is charged with first-degree murder.

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