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First memorial service for victims of the Fordyce shooting; Roy Sturgis is remembered as a selfless servant

FORDYCE, Arkansas – A week after the mass shooting in Fordyce, many mourned the man killed that day and remembered him as a selfless man loved by the community.

Hundreds of people gathered at Benton Funeral Home in Fordyce Friday morning to pay their final respects to Roy Sturgis, who died at just 50 years old.


Braden Pierce worked with Sturgis in the transportation industry and said Sturgis was the type of person who helped others whenever they needed something, whether they asked for it or not.

Hanna Sturgis said earlier this week that this personality type led her father to go to the Mad Butcher grocery store to help victims after the gunshot wound and later die in the hospital.

On Friday, however, the focus is not on the tragedy, but on the impressive legacy that Sturgis left behind.

Before the service, several semi-trucks lined up outside the funeral home and followed the line of cars afterward. Pierce said he wished Sturgis had seen the turnout and number of people supporting him Friday morning.

“I know he would love it and it’s something he would want,” Pierce said. “Just truck drivers… they stick together. They’re tight-knit, they’re all close. They’re very close.”

Everyone KARK 4 News spoke with on Friday and throughout the week said that as terrible as the tragedy was, there is always a small light in the darkness. That light is both their faith and the close-knit community they have in Fordyce that will help them get through the days and weeks ahead.

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