Texas Department of Criminal Justice loses officer in connection to COVID-19

Local News

PAMPA, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) – The Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) said it is grieving the loss of an employee connected to COVID-19.

77-year-old Correctional Officer IV Harold Smith was reported to have tested positive for COVID-19 on Nov. 30, and was admitted to an Amarillo hospital on Dec. 9. He passed away on the morning of Dec. 15.

TDCJ said Smith had five and a half years of service, and was assigned to the Jordan Unit in Pampa.

“Harold Smith is an example of what it means to serve joining the agency after retirement age,” said TDCJ Executive Director Bryan Collier. “He always wore a smile and was dedicated to his agency. All members of the TDCJ are sending their thoughts and prayers to the Smith family during this difficult time.”

“Officer Smith did not just serve Texas he served close to home as the Scoutmaster of Boy Scout Troop #501 in Panhandle,” said Correctional Institutions Division Director Bobby Lumpkin. “Harold Smith loved reading and the history of the railroad system. He was well liked and know for always being ready for a good conversation. Officer Smith will not be forgotten.”

The TDCJ said that it has had 27 employees who have died related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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