Warren County Sheriff’s Deputy Sam Winchester died after battling cancer for over two years.
Winchester grew up in a tiny town in Jefferson County, northeast of Natchez, called Rodney, Miss. His upbringing resulted in him seeing firsthand what it means to be a public servant and led him to a life-long career in service of others.
“The person I looked up to was my father,” Winchester said in an earlier interview. “Ironically, we both mirrored each other’s occupations. He was in the military and also he worked at the Jefferson County Sheriff’s department.”
In 1990, prior to a career in law enforcement, Winchester enlisted in the United States Military.
After the army, he got his first start in law enforcement by working at Alcorn State University. After a brief stint with the college, he started at the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department in 2000. Winchester saw that the Warren County Sheriff’s Department was hiring and he was hired in 2004.
Winchester worked his way up the ranks and in 2006 was named detective for the Criminal Investigation Division and became a hostage crisis negotiator for the department. In addition, he served as the county fire investigator as well as the primary driving instructor at the Mississippi Law Enforcement Officer Training Academy.
A man of many responsibilities, Winchester remained mild-mannered and dutiful, saying he simply enjoyed being there for his community.
“My favorite part of serving on the sheriff’s department is that I get to help people,” Winchester said. “If you can just help one person and touch one person’s life you can consider that a successful day.”
In 2017, he was recognized by Hon. Bennie G. Thompson in the House of Representatives by a Congressional Record for his service. In the record, Thompson wrote, “I ask my colleagues to join me in recognizing, Det. Sam Winchester for his hard work, dedication and a strong desire to serve his country and community.”
Throughout his career, he earned the respect of his colleagues. Warren County Deputy Joseph Stubbs regarded Winchester as “one of the best men I’ve ever met.”
Warren County Sheriff Martin Pace offered the following about Lt. Winchester:
“Lt. Winchester was a trusted employee of the Sheriff’s Office and a dear friend. He came to to the Sheriff’s Office in Warren County in 2004 after beginning his law enforcement career in Jefferson County.
Sam worked as a uniform patrol deputy and in 2007 was promoted to the rank of investigator. Sam wore many hats. He was our lead boat operator as well as a boating safety instructor. He was the county-certified fire investigator. He was a driving instructor for emergency vehicle operations, not only for the Warren County Sheriff’s Office but was an instructor for the Mississippi Law Enforcement Training Academy in Pearl.
Sam’s talent and dedication to this community will certainly be missed. We ask the public to keep the family in their prayers.”
The Vicksburg Daily News team would like to thank Det. Winchester for his decades of service and extend our sincere condolences to his family, friends and brothers that served alongside him at the Sheriff’s Office and in the military. We will provide funeral arrangements when they are announced.
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