LONDON, Ohio — Every time Madison County Sheriff's Deputy Zane Beathard stepped out of the house to serve his community, he was strong. Even during his battle with stage four cancer.
On Monday morning, Zane passed away. His wife Alicia told 10TV he was surrounded by his loved ones; just how he wanted it.
"He was a strong person, he had to be,” she said. "I am now in the position to be the strongest one out of us all."
Zane was a father of six young boys. Alicia said they all look like him in some way, having the best qualities of their father.
Alicia said he had just turned 39 when he got the diagnosis last year. This past week, they learned they had only hours left.
After that prognosis, Alicia said Zane wanted to go home. She said as soon as they pulled into the driveway, he received a “hero’s welcome." The streets of his neighborhood were lined with sheriff's deputy cruisers and cruisers from several other departments.
“Instead of just hours, we were given a few days, so I say that his last act of love to me was to give me those days instead of hours…because I needed them the most,” she said.
Flags flying outside the Madison County Sheriff’s Office and Madison County Court are at Half-Staff in honor of Deputy Beathard. He served 11 years for his department and city, loving every moment of it.
"I’m at peace because he's at peace. He's no longer suffering,” Alicia said. “He may not have won his battle with cancer, but he won at life, so I hold that dear.”
The family told 10TV that the sheriff’s office is planning a service for Deputy Beathard, but a date has not yet been decided.
A GoFundMe was created to support the family with funeral expenses.