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Family, Friends & Fellow Officers Remember...

Deputy Sheriff Vernon Matthew Polk County Sheriff's Office, Florida

Deputy Sheriff

Vernon Matthew "Matt" Williams

Polk County Sheriff's Office, Florida

End of Watch: Thursday, September 28, 2006
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Reflections for Deputy Sheriff Vernon Matthew "Matt" Williams


Missing you as always. Keeping your family in my thoughts and prayers

September 11, 2008

Keep flying high brother!

We still remember.

August 1, 2008

Hey Brother,

I was going through my phone today looking for someone's number and found yours. Can't bring myself to delete it I guess. I still remember the last time I called it. A friend calling and waking me up to tell me that Polk County had just been involved in a shooting and me calling to check on you and to get the scoop, only to leave you a voice mail to call me back.....
I apologize that it has been so long since I have written again. I lost Yokey about a month ago, on the day that I turned in his retirement paperwork. Something went wrong internally and I had to put him down, so I need you to keep an eye on him for me please. On the good side, it was also the day that the Mrs. told me that I am going to be a Dad, so some give some take. She had been going to wait until Father's day to surprise me, but figured I could use the cheering up. You would like my new partner I named him Cowboy…go figure huh. He runs like the wind, hits high, and hits like a freight train I am told. He’s a Maligator, so enough said huh. We just finished Patrol and Narc school and we start the road full time tomorrow so when you’re not too busy, keep an eye on us too. I will keep you up to date on how he does.
I miss talking to you Matt, sharing jokes, gripes, or the latest stupid criminal story……….take care brother.

Lloyd O'Quinn
July 19, 2008

Hey Brother from a different Mother...Continuing to stive to be the best like you brother...Will NEVER forget..I think of you ofter and miss your jokes and pranks..You truly have blessed my life just by me meeting you and your family...Hope you like the name of this new K9 partner..not as clever as Diogi (which as I remember you saying is Apatchi for DOG) haha...but Fivo is purdy darn clever you have to admit...haha...anyway..just wanted to drop you a line brother, and let you know...I REMEMBER!!! I know your looking down on me..and I thank you for all the knowledge, laughs, and friendship you shared with me..Peace Brother

D/S Bobby Boehmler and K9 Fivo
PCSO K9 Unit
July 7, 2008

Dear Matt.

Its 12:30 am on Wednesday morning on June 25, and it has been a while since I came to your grave but finally made it with one of your fellow employees last week my friend. I wanted to get there on your birthday but did not make it in time due to 3 major surgeries and have been in and out of the hospitals and on medical leave for 3 months with radiation and recovery. I am a survivor and will beat this as I told Grady.

When we got to your grave to pray, I knelt down and asked why once again as always, and you being taken away from such a wonderful family, but thought as Billy Joel said, " Only the good die young".......That must be true since Hovan and I lost a close great friend recently at the age 40 in a car crash. I said a prayer for your mom Maxine as well and we saw where they added her date of death to her headstone already and know that she is happy now because she is with you.

We are back riding 10-12 with different surrounding agengies and departments and some of the Bucs have been special deputised and have more respect for your job. Bucs training camp is right around the corner in Celebration, Orlando, and since I will be over there for 2 weeks as well, I will stop by with other Bucs: Hovan, Buenning, Economis, Bryant, Dunn, Hayward, White, Smith and Clayton. They all were there for me while I was in the hospital and help me get throughest time of my life. Take care Matt and rest in peace my friend with Diogi.

Sincerely, Dave Williams
Honorary Deputy for Polk, Citrus and Sarasota Counties

David C. Williams
Honorary Deputy for Polk, Citrus and Sarasota Counties
June 24, 2008

Hey Matt,
Just stopping in to say hello and that many of us keep the memory of your sacrifice near and dear to our hearts. You are, and will always be, a true hero!
My family has inherited a beautiful male German Shephard who strongly resembles your DiOGi. We are very proud to have him. He is such a saint and such a good friend. It's no wonder that you and DiOGi were so close. A man's best friend...

LEO Wife and Mom
June 22, 2008

we are all travlers in this world from the sweet grass to the packin house from birth till death we walk together thru the eternities

D/S Doug Alexander
Polk Co.
June 21, 2008

So when tomorrow starts without me, don't think we're far apart, for every time you think of me, I'm right there in your heart.

Rest in peace now

June 11, 2008

Thoughts and prayers from Michigan. I remember...I will always remember!!!!

K9 Supporter
May 14, 2008

There is something special about the relationship between a man and his dog.
And when they're both police officers, well, it's just a remarkable bond. And now a dog park named after Diogi. How cool is that! So glad you met the Lord in this lifetime. He loved you before you loved Him.
Lynn Kole
Bellingham, WA

May 14, 2008

I never met you Matt, but I want to thank you for your sacrifice. May God truly give your family peace, comfort, and His everlasting protection. I have your USPCA article posted on the interior door of where I keep my uniforms and equipment. Every tour I glance at your photograph to remind me of the dangers of the path that I have chosen, and a request for God's daily protection to bring me home safely to my family, as well as my K9 partner. Thank You for reminding me how important each day truly is.
Your fellow brother in uniform, God Bless.

April 18, 2008

My space sent me a note to say today would have been Matt Williams Birthday.
Everywhere I drive my stickers on my car remind everyone who sees me coming or drives behind me to remember Matt & DiOGi.
A man & his partner remembered never dies.
Never forget......
Rest in peace.
Derek Avis

Derek Avis
Winter Haven Resident
March 28, 2008

Just wanted to drop in and say HAPPY BIRTHDAY MATT...we still miss you around this place and DiOGi...oh I finally got me a german shepherd Matt...she is the smartest little thing you ever seen! I so remember our day in the hall way the week before you were taken from us all. I am putting it all to good use, what you & DiOGi were showing me and it's working!! Thanks Matt! Your memory lives on inside all of us that were so blessed to have known you...give DiOGi and Rocky a big pat on the head for me and a hug to your mom. I know she's at peace now that she is up there with you guys!
Love you all,

Diane D
Polk County Sheriff's Office
March 28, 2008

My brother, Sgt. Chris Reyka of BSO attended Matt's funeral to pay respects for his department. He is now a fallen angel. He died outside Walgreen's in Pompano last August from gunfire. I live in Winter Haven. The day of Matt's funeral, I kept wondering how his family must have felt. Now I know.

March 24, 2008

Hey brother,

Just wanted to tell the people out there that even though you are not here with us physically....you are still helping make this county a better place. I spoke with a lady about a month ago who works with DUI offenders. She said the day before my call a gentlman came in and enrolled for a class. She noticed that you were the officer that had arrested him for DUI. When she asked if he realized who the arresting officer was and he responded by saying, "I know, that is why I decided to enroll in the class, if Deputy Williams was willing to give his life for this community, I want to honor him by getting my life straight.

Just want you to know that we live every day bringing honor and pride to what you stood for. Give mom and dad a hug for me. I miss you my hero.

Joe Williams
March 20, 2008

Hey Bro: we will never forget you god bless

D/S Doug Alexander
February 23, 2008

John 15:13
"Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends."

February 18, 2008

Even though I never knew you, I fight the tears when I watch the tribute videos made for you. You will never be forgotten. RIP brother.

Ohio Police Officer
February 18, 2008

Hey buddy, I was just looking at Bob Eden's website and came across the dedication he left to you and DiOGi. I found a lot of pictures I didn't have yet. Each one of them made me smile and laugh in their own way. It's been so long since I got to see you last, but I feel like it was just yesterday. I just wanted to leave another reflection for you to tell you exactly how proud I am to know you and work with you and DiOGi and how proud you made me September 28th. Everyday I go to work and every track I run and every bad guy I find hiding, I think of you and wish you were there to give me the hug you gave me the day Britt and I found the robbery suspect hiding in the swamp with you and Tonya. I really miss you bro. We've found a few bad guys that I can only attribute to you having something to do with. By the way, the guy Kurt, Moe and me found hiding in the sand mine, I have no doubt you had something to do with putting that piece of animal waste on the walkway that made me look through the walkway and see the guy hiding. I almost cried all over again when it hit me how I saw that guy, I know that was you. And the swarm of bees out of the middle of nowhere at training day, yeah, I know that was you too. Man, you make me proud to be a K-9 handler and I want you to know that everyone is doing okay but we miss you A LOT. I'm sitting here typing this looking at the picture on the website of you and DiOGi and I can still feel the breeze that was blowing the day we took that picture. Britt is going to retire within the next year or two and I'm trying to convince the staff to get me a puppy to start out new for my next dog. It's something I always wanted to do but when I see how well it worked with DiOGi, it drove me to do it more. Still thinking of you and missing you bro. Pat DiOGi on the head for me and don't think for one second, anyone will ever forget. I miss you like the brother i never had. Keep up the antics but remember, I know it's you, may take me some time to realize it, but I know. Oh and by the way, thanks for not letting that UPS truck plow into me on 540A. Your friends for life, Steve and Britt

K-9 Deputy Sheriff Steve Hearth
Polk County Sheriff's Office K-9 Unit
February 16, 2008


February 16, 2008

Dear Matt and Diogi,
While visiting with our daughter last night, you and Diogi became a part of our conversation. Our daughter, a fellow LEO, was showing her new puppy to a friend, a soldier. They discussed some of the names that were great for these four-legged friends. They both stated that "Diogi" was one of their favorites, but my daughter added that she felt that there was only one true "Diogi", the hero officer of the law who made the ultimate sacrifice.
Please know that a day does not go by that we, who are left here to ponder, don't think about heroes like you and Diogi. We, too, have lost heroes close to us. May you all continue to walk the beat in heaven while your brothers and sisters on earth continue where you left off. Your sacrifices will not go in vain.

Leo Mom and Wife
February 9, 2008

Dear Matt and Diogi.
Your sacrifice, the ultimate, will never be forgotten! Keep a watch out for the rest of us. We will never forget!!!!

LEO Wife and Mom
February 3, 2008

I was heartsick when I finished reading of the man and I use the word instead of low life that killed one officer and a police dog while being tracked.My hat goes off to every one of our policemen and women in this country that risk their lives night and day to protect us from these people.I just want to say how VERY MUCH i appreciate them and admire them and my heart goes out to all the families of our great slain officers.May God be with you all!----Charles Howell

private citizen-Charles Howell
January 28, 2008

My son apparently knew you and your partner and talked about DiOGi quite bit. He works at Polk Correctional. R.I.P. hero.

J. Williams
Retired GA Chief Deputy
January 11, 2008

You are never far from my thoughts...
Happy New Year Matt and Diogi!

Sterling Heights Michigan
January 2, 2008


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