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Vigil held for Frank McClelland
Frank Vigil
Cindy McClelland (center), the widow of Ludowici Police Chief Frank McClelland, is comforted by her family and friends during a candlelight vigil held on the one year anniversary of McClelland's death. - photo by Lewis Levine

The residents of the city of Ludowici, Long County and even residents from Liberty County all came together at the Parker’s service station on Highway 84 in the center of town to remember Ludowici Police Chief Frank McClelland.

Sunday night marked the one year anniversary of McClelland’s death. He was struck and killed by an alleged drunk driver fleeing from police on Sept. 15, 2018. Also killed in the accident was Army veteran Marvin Pope who was riding a motorcycle when he was struck.

Residents and several law enforcement officers from Liberty County came out to honor McClelland who was killed within a few feet of where the candle light vigil was held.

Family and friends struggled to fight back the tears as McClelland’s wife of nearly 42 years Cindy McClelland thanked everyone for coming out.

“Two things, we found out is our lives will never be the same again, but at the same time our lives would not be over,” the family’s pastor Eric Rentz said during the brief vigil. “We are Ludowici strong tonight. Aren’t you glad you’re in a community where no matter what tragedy may come our way we’re going to stay together, we’re going to be strong.”

After the pastor’s thoughtful word candles were distributed among the 150 in attendance. As the candles were lit tears flowed freely and a prayer was said for Frank McClelland and his family and to bring comfort by the community as a whole.

Cindy McClelland spoke with members of the media and said she was humbled yet surprised by the turn out. “I greatly appreciate the turn out, it reminds me he’s not forgotten.”

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