A day to say goodbye—the funeral today for the lawman killed in the search for a Burke County murder suspect last week and the parents also killed. Family, friends and law enforcement officers gathered in Marion at West Court Baptist Church yesterday afternoon for a more private goodbye for US Forest Service Officer Jason Crisp, calling him a family man, a true civil servant, a hero. This afternoon at  2, thousands are expected to gather at McDowell High School—where Officer Crisp went to high school—and where his funeral will be held. Following that service, Crisp and his beloved K9, Maros, will be buried together. Crisp and Maros were shot in the woods of Burke County by Troy Whisnant, who was being sought after murdering his own parents, step mother Rhonda and dad Levi Whisnant. Levi Whisnant, 60, and Ronda Whisnant, 55, will be buried today in a combined funeral also held at 2 p.m. at Zion Baptist Church near the couple’s home.
Speaking of the community coming together, some 30 volunteers, finding that Officer Crisp had just moved his family to a tract west of Marion to raise his two sons, came to the property to finish work on a home the family was using while a new home was to be built on the property. The volunteers worked all day Saturday, and finished plumbing and other projects to make the residence ready for the family.