NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WBTW) – Hundreds gathered Tuesday evening to mourn the death of Officer Melton “Fox” Gore, who died one week ago.
Lt. Justin Wyatt is part of the environmental services unit with the Horry County Police Department. He says for his whole career, he worked alongside Officer Gore.
Lt. Wyatt says Officer Gore had a “contagious” smile.
“I would always ask him, ‘Hey Fox, do you need anything?'” said Lt. Wyatt. “He’s like, ‘No, baby! I got you, baby!’ That was his slogan, ‘I got you, baby,’ and he truly meant it. Whatever we needed as a community, as a police department or me personally, he always had us.”
Officers, loved ones and people showing support paid their respects to Officer Gore during a public visitation in the auditorium of North Myrtle Beach High School. Police say he was cleaning debris off South Carolina Highway 22 last Tuesday, when he was hit by an SUV and died. No charges have been filed.
Officer Gore was 57 years old.
“It’s been tough for the whole agency and the community, but I’ll tell you I’ve had people stop me along the way,” said Chief Joseph Hill. “It’s just been incredible to hear the stories of his impact on everyday folks in Horry County.”
Chief Hill says one of the best ways Officer Gore loved serving people was through cooking.
“Chicken, fried shrimp and fried fish,” Chief Hill said. “Some of the best food I’ve ever had was at the hands of Fox and I had asked him one time when he was cooking for us in a hurricane. I was like, ‘What have you put on this chicken to make it taste so good?’ Basically, it was salt, pepper and a lot of love.”
Officer Gore served for 20 years in environmental services and Lt. Wyatt says he’ll always remember how Fox’s energy would brighten anyone’s day.
“He was great at diffusing situations, going out into the public, networking [and] creating the relationships that help the police department grow in the community,” Lt. Wyatt said.
Officer Gore’s funeral ceremony will be held at the Myrtle Beach Convention Center at 11 a.m. Wednesday. Horry County police will then lead a procession to the cemetery at Mt. Calvary Missionary Baptist Church in Little River, where Officer Gore will be laid to rest.
News13 will have complete coverage of Wednesday’s funeral.