TIPPECANOE COUNTY, Ind. (WLFI) - Tippecanoe County Coroner Dr. Martin David Avolt died in a car crash in Florida Thursday morning.
Avolt was visiting his son and his family in Dunedin, about 25 miles west of Tampa. Though the news of his passing comes as a surprise to many, the legacy he leaves behind is anything but surprising.
"It takes a person of professional talent who wants to serve the public and can combine the talent with the desire to serve," said Joe Bumbleburg.
As a lawyer, Joe Bumbleburg often works with the coroner's office. He said taking the job as a coroner says a lot about a person.
"Dealing with family death is just not something that people really want to do but somebody has to do it," said Bumbleburg.
Tippecanoe County Commissioner Tom Murtaugh has known the Avolt family his entire life. He said the county really lost somebody special Thursday.
"He always had a smile on his face but he was always serious about his job and he always had his mind on being professional and operating the coroner's office in the best way possible," said Murtaugh.
Tippecanoe County Republican Party Chairman Bob Hicks is another longtime friend of Avolt. He said Dr. Avolt and his wife, Donna, were very active with party events. He said he was even lucky enough to teach their two children.
"They had really good kids, and I got to know their grandkids. It's really a sad day. It's really a tragedy when you lose somebody, a valuable member of the community," said Hicks.
Avolt was running unopposed for the office this November. Hicks said a caucus will be held to replace Avolt on the ballot. However, those plans have been put on the back burner at this time.
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