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Fallen officer

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Well-known member
Oct 27, 2005
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NW Panhandle Texas
Even in death, Catlin Carithers will do what he did throughout his professional career: save lives.

Carithers, the 24-year-old corrections officer killed Sunday during a prison riot in Adams County, was an organ donor.

His family is waiting on his body to be released pending an autopsy.

When people reflected on Carithers, they remembered his smile, his heart and his propensity to help people.

Carithers of Meadville wasn't even supposed to work Sunday when the riot broke out at the Adams County Correctional Center, said his brother, Josey Carithers. He recently had received a promotion to senior corrections officer that took him off the weekend shift.

"They called him in for backup," Josey Carithers said Monday. "I know my brother, and I bet he got in his truck and hauled butt to go help. He was ready."

Catlin Carithers recently had been trained to be part of the facility's special response team.

Of the more than two dozen officers held hostage during the riot, 15 had to be rescued by special response teams, Adams County Sheriff Chuck Mayfield said.

Carithers was killed on the roof of one of the prison buildings.

"He always wanted to be in a law enforcement field. I guess he got to thinking that's where he wanted to be, close to home and doing something he really loved," Josey Carithers said.

"But when you'd see him, he'd have this awesome look on his face," he said. "Every time something went on there, he'd call me up and tell me about it. I think he loved the company that he worked for."

People who knew him said he was physically fit, and loved law enforcement.

"He was a good athlete, and a great kid," said David Thornton, who coached him on the Southwest Mississippi Community College golf team in 2007-08.

Thornton remembered Catlin's sense of determination. He described one particular tournament at Hinds Community College in which Carithers kept hitting the ball into the water on a specific hole.

"He was determined to get that ball on the green," he said. "I think he parred every other hole on that course, but he had a 14 on that one. If he decided he was going to do something, he'd do it."

Catlin Carithers, a 2006 graduate of Franklin County High School, loved to help people, too, his friends said.

"He was that type of kid. Anything you needed, he'd bend over backward to help his friends or anybody," Thornton said. "He was one that you just knew he was going to do something great in life."

Catlin Carithers was a volunteer firefighter at Franklin County's District Five Volunteer Fire Department for several years, Chief Roger Causey said.

"He was such an intelligent young man with such a bright future," said Causey. "And he always tried to do whatever he could do for other people."

He said Carithers' fellow firefighters had been in touch throughout the day Monday and that the overwhelming feeling was confusion.

"They're all just sad and mad at the same time," he said. "This was just uncalled for. A young man's life wasted for nothing."

Franklin is a small county, officials said, and the volunteer firefighters tend to know each other.

Franklin County EMA Director and Fire Coordinator Mark Thornton said Carithers made quite an impression on him.

"He's probably one of the finest young gentlemen you'd ever run into," he said. "He was big into church and worked with the young group. He'll be badly missed."

Carithers was engaged to be married, his brother said.

Local sportswriter James Covington remembered Carithers being a pleasure to work with.

"Catlin was a great guy and a hard worker. He loved all sports and was always smiling and eager to make things right," he said.

Catlin Carithers is the second law enforcement officer in Mississippi in three weeks killed in the line of duty. Pearl Police Investigator Mike Walter, 37, a married father of one, was killed while serving a search warrant on May 1.

Catlin's death hasn't hit all his family members yet, his brother said.

"It's going to be a long road," he said. "We're going to miss him a lot."


Well-known member
Feb 13, 2005
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I hope you are careful around those jail birds MsSage, I gotta feelin things could go south in a hurry in there.
good luck

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