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It is with heavy hearts that we share the news of the passing of Izard County Sheriff Earnie Blackley.

Anytime you learn of the passing of a fellow public servant such as Sheriff William Earnest "Earnie" Blackley, whether it's a death in the line-of-duty or as a result of natural causes, it's devastating nonetheless. It's a call you never want to receive because there are no words that are adequate to express your condolences.

I became acquainted with Earnie in November of 2018, while attending training hosted by the Arkansas Sheriff's Association at Camp Robinson for newly elected sheriffs.

During training, Earnie and I found many common interests and shared ideas in regards to improving public safety for the citizens who elected us. Earnie was passionate about public safety and eager to introduce new ideas for the betterment of Izard County.

More than that, Earnie was an exemplary public servant and consummate professional who worked assiduously to improve the quality of life for Izard County citizens by ensuring their safety against threats known and unknown. He was a man of great character, evident by the display of love and support from those who knew him best. Earnie leaves behind a legacy that will long endure the passage of time and serve as a constant reminder for how to live a life of public service with distinction.

My thoughts and prayers are with his wife, and the entire Izard County Sheriff's Office.

Sheriff Blackley's funeral service is set to take place Wednesday, Jan. 8 at 2 p.m. at Melbourne First Baptist Church located on Highway 9 Spur in Melbourne, AR.




Lafayette Woods, Jr. Sheriff