DALLAS, NC (FOX 46 WJZY) - The investigation continues into what caused the crash that killed a Dallas police officer. His death has left a large hole in the small Gaston County community, with an even smaller police force.
Many in the town say they have fond memories of the man, the officer and 22-year-veteran of the force.
The memorial for Corporal Travis Wells continued to grow Thursday night. Flowers were placed at the flag and also the entrance to the Dallas Police Department.
“He was the nicest guy,” one local said of Corporal Wells.
That’s how many describe him - a cop who was an all-around upstanding guy.
“He ate lunch with my kids, my niece,” said Cody McKinney.
He’s described as a community pillar and veteran of the police force in the town, and that's what makes the news so tough.
“I regretfully inform you, Travis Wells, an officer with 22 years of service with the Dallas Police Dept, died in a single-car accident about 10:00 a.m. today,” Chief Allen Scott of the Dallas Police Department said.
Not much is known about the crash. It happened along Dallas-Bessemer City Hwy and involved a police car. Troopers are looking into the crash, but the fact that it took the life of someone so well known in the community has the entire town in mourning.
As the sun was setting, flowers were being laid at the police department flagpole and those FOX 46 talked with, all had a story that exemplified who he was.
“My friend fell in the bathroom and hit her head. And he come over and took her to the hospital, and stayed there until her nephew came to be with her,” Dallas resident Annette Blake said.
Others say they had known Corporal Wells for decades.
“One of the nicest guys you'd ever meet. You can't say nothing bad about him. Nothing.Travis was a great guy, officer wells was a great guy,” Wells’ friend Frank Nicoletti told FOX 46.
He was a man known and loved by many.
“You’re dealing with someone you possibly see on a daily basis. Dallas is a small town. They knew their officers pretty well, due to the fact. And he was here for 22 years,” said Trooper Ray Pierce with NC State Highway Patrol.
A community, now trying to comfort a department that is grieving.
“I can't imagine what they're going through right now,” McKinney said.
Plans for memorials and remembrances are still being worked out at this time.