BOONE, N.C. -- The pregnant widow of slain Watauga County Sheriff's Deputy William Ronald Mast Jr. walked behind his flag-draped casket Tuesday to pay him honor.
She is carrying their unborn son, the couple's first child, due in a couple of weeks, who will be named William Hunter Mast.
The Winston-Salem Journal reported that other members of their family walked with them, and they were followed by the thumping feet of the entire Watauga County Sheriff's Office marching abreast.
Deputy Mast, 23, was shot and killed Thursday as he checked on a 911 hang-up call in Deep Gap. The deputy who was with him returned fire and killed Mitchell Allen Trivette, 33, of 2130 Hardin Road, according to the sheriff's office.
Mast's friend, Master Trooper Chris Morgan, talked about how he and Mast loved to hunt and fish together, and of the main thing on Mast's mind recently.
"Over the past year, William talked mostly about Paige and Hunter," Morgan told the Journal. "He was as excited as anyone I know about the birth of their son. And when he gets here, if he's like William, and I know he's going to be, he'll have a fishing pole in one hand, a rifle in another and a crossbow hidden somewhere for special occasions."
Read more: The Winston-Salem Journal.