NC deputy, SRO who died after battle with COVID-19 leaves behind wife, 5 children

MONTGOMERY COUNTY, N.C. — A North Carolina sheriff’s deputy and school resource officer has died from coronavirus, according to the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office.

Deputy and SRO Sypraseuth “Bud” Phouangphrachanh worked for the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office. He died Tuesday night.

[LINK: GoFundMe Page for a fundraiser for Bud]

According to a Facebook post by Randolph County, Phouangphrachanh “fought hard against the unknowns of COVID-19.”

RANDOLPH COUNTY STATEMENT:

“Our deepest sympathy to our neighboring county, the officer’s family and law enforcement family at Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office in the passing of SRO Bud Phouang who fought hard against the unknowns of COVID 19.”

Montgomery County Sheriff Chris Watkins released the following statement Wednesday morning:

"It is with the heaviest of hearts that the Sheriff’s Office informs you of the death of Deputy Sheriff Sypraseuth “Bud” Phouangphrachanh, age 43, of Candor, NC, after a battle with COVID-19. He passed away last night in the intensive care unit of First Health-Moore Regional Hospital, Pinehurst, NC. After suffering from allergy symptoms, he sought outpatient care and was later tested for Coronavirus and began in-home isolation. He was admitted into the hospital on Monday, March 30th.

"Deputy Phouangphrachanh was a 14-year veteran of the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office and was previously employed as a Police Officer with the Town of Candor. Deputy Phouangphrachanh was affectionately known as “Deputy Bud” by his co-workers, community and his students where he served as a School Resource Officer. During his service to Montgomery County he filled many roles, but his passion was as a School Resource Officer where he worked with middle school and high school students. His dedication to youth led him to attend DARE Instructor Training, which he loved and believed in as a tool to better his community. He was known for his big smile, sense of humor and laughter. His service and dedication is being echoed by the County Manager, Matthew Woodard, and Montgomery County School Superintendent, Dale Ellis.

“Deputy Bud is survived by his wife, five children, brothers, an extended family as well as a family of co-workers, especially his brothers and sisters who wear a badge, stand tall, but never too tall to bend down and whisper a comforting word to a kid, as he did so well. Our hearts and prayers go out to his family, as well as the families of all those throughout this world who have endured the loss of loved ones in this crisis."

Please keep the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office, North Carolina in your thoughts and prayers. Deputy/School Resource...

Posted by Oakboro Police Department on Wednesday, 1 April 2020

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As of Tuesday afternoon, North Carolina reported at least 1,498 cases and eight deaths statewide.