News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

Essay contest honors Deputy Dave Blann

Black Butte School students in Camp Sherman were finally back in the classroom with teachers and classmates on January 11. Their teacher, Delaney Sharp told them they were having a special visit from Bethanne Kronick Blann, who told them about the “Deputy Dave” Memorial Essay Contest. Accompanying Bethanne were Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office Corporal Jason Pollock and Patrol Deputy Clark Linden. The officers were there to talk about the important role law enforcement officers, like her late husband, Dave Blann, play in the community.

Students’ eyes focused on the equipment each officer wore on their vests and belts. Their masked faces didn’t hide their curiosity about being a police officer. Bethanne stood in front of a display with her husband’s photograph, his badge, and other cherished items. She began the presentation by asking the students to think about what their first job might be when they grow up.

“Do you want to do something you really love doing that makes you happy?” she asked.

Bethanne told students that the man everyone knew as “Deputy Dave” loved his job being Camp Sherman’s resident deputy.

“He came home at night and often told me how much he loved his job. He loved taking care of our community and he took his work really seriously. “But,” she added, “He also loved to have fun. He had three rules that he lived by: First, have fun. Second, make someone smile, and; third, see rule number one.”

Deputy Dave served Camp Sherman for 24 years. He passed away on February 15, 2019. Bethanne told the students that on snowy days during the winter months, her husband’s morning began at 3?a.m. when he climbed up into a big yellow snowplow and cleared the road so the school bus could safely pick up and deliver students to school and back. Keeping everyone safe was one of his biggest priorities. He was such a beloved member of the community that the Camp Sherman Road was dedicated to him with a plaque just off Highway 20.

Sharp said Deputy Dave’s relationship with the Camp Sherman students was a special one.

“He really enjoyed working and interacting with the kids.

His tone would change and he could talk in kid language making them comfortable,” said Sharp.

“He made it kind of light for the kids and put them at ease.

It was cool to see that side of him.

My last interaction with him was with the kids, the week before he passed.

We were coming back from a ski day and our bus driver, Bob, saw Deputy Dave.

They were friends from way back.

Deputy Dave got on the school bus and was joking with Bob giving him a hard time and telling the kids to keep an eye on him to make sure he was following all the rules and keeping them safe.

The feel of that interaction was so positive and fun with the kids all laughing.

It was so fun watching Dave razzing Bob and Bob razzing him back.

It was a razz fest!”

Sadly, the following week Sharp had to break the news of Deputy Dave’s death to his students.

“It was one of the hardest conversations I’ve ever had to have with the kids,” he said. “Some were as young as 5. They all knew who Dave was.”

The Deputy Dave Memorial Essay Contest is open to all Black Butte School students. They are invited to write an essay in letter format, along with an illustration, to Deputy Dave that describes an experience they have had with a deputy or law enforcement officer that positively impacted them or their community. They can also write about why they think officers like Deputy Dave are important to the community.

The letters are due February 1. One student will be selected based on his or her letter. On February 17, the winner will receive an award. All participants will receive something special to remember Deputy Dave.


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