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Hero Down: Oconee County Sheriff’s Lt. Scott Underwood Drowns After Lawnmower Overturns

Farmington, GA – Oconee County Sheriff’s Office (OCSO) Lieutenant Scott Underwood died on May 19 after the lawnmower he was riding overturned and pinned him in a creek.

The tragic incident occurred in the 50-year-old lieutenant’s back yard, the Athens Banner-Herald reported.

Oconee County Sheriff James Hale said Lt. Underwood was cutting the grass along a creek behind his residence when the mower overturned.

The machine landed on top of him and pinned him beneath water, Sheriff Hale said.

Lt. Underwood’s wife had been tending to another family member at the hospital that day and returned home at about 9:15 p.m. to find her husband’s patrol vehicle still parked at the house, according to The Athens Banner-Herald.

She knew he was scheduled to work that night, so she began looking around the property for him and stumbled upon the overturned lawnmower.

The coroner determined Lt. Underwood drowned.

“It’s a tragic and terrible accident,” the sheriff told the Athens Banner-Herald.

Lt. Underwood served his community faithfully for 21 years, the OCSO said in a press release the following day.

“He had genuine passion for his work in law enforcement and was beloved by all who had the privilege to work with him,” the sheriff’s office said. “Please keep his family and his Sheriff’s Office family in your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time as we grieve our tremendous loss and say goodbye to our friend and brother.”

Lt. Underwood leaves behind his wife, Tracy, as well as his daughter, Elizabeth, and his sons, Ethan and Evan, according to his obituary.

He is also survived by his parents, brother, grandmother, and many nephews and nieces.

Lt. Underwood was laid to rest on May 16.

Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Oconee County Sheriff’s Office Lieutenant Scott Underwood, both blood and blue. Thank you for your service.

Rest easy, hero. We’ll hold the line from here.

Written by
Holly Matkin

Holly is a former probation and parole officer who is married to a sheriff’s deputy. She is a regular contributor to Signature Montana magazine, and has written feature articles for Distinctly Montana magazine.

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Written by Holly Matkin


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