Fellow deputy on Kunze: ‘He was a hero’

Local

The Sedgwick County Sheriff’s Office is remembering one of its own as a hero.

“He was a great person. He was a great father, a great husband and that he was a hero,” said Sedgwick County Sheriff’s Office Lt. Jason Gill.

Lt. Jason Gill worked with Deputy Robert Kunze for all 12 years Kunze was on the force.

“I was a brand-new sergeant and he was a brand-new deputy, so we were learning the job together,” Gill said.

Gill said Kunze had a distinct way about him; a way that made nearly everyone he came in contact with feel at ease.

“The description that everybody has given hits the nail right on the head, you never knew if Robert was having a bad day because he came in and was smiling and joking and bringing up conversations you had two or three years ago. He never met a stranger. He could talk to anyone. He was a great guy,” Gill said.

While Kunze’s brothers and sisters in blue cope with his loss, they told KSN they are beyond thankful for the community’s support during this difficult time.

“Nothing is going to, I guess, extinguish what we are going through right now, but to have other people understand that we are human and that we are dealing with this loss, it definitely helps,” Gill said.

Numerous law enforcement agencies have reached out to the sheriff’s office expressing its condolences. Community members and beyond have also sent food and cards.

“I couldn’t even begin to tell you all of the groups, but we are keeping track of it because we are going to definitely let them know, let the family know, let them know we appreciate it,” Gill said. 

Students from Oaklawn Elementary School also created cards for the staff. Many of them have words thanking Deputy Kunze and his coworkers for protecting them. Others have drawings of Deputy Kunze and apologizing to his friends and family for their loss.

“You go out there and read those and you can’t keep your eyes dry,” Gill said.

Gill said there’s nothing easy about the current situation, however he said the continued support is helping in the healing process.

Most of all he hopes the community understands the impact Deputy Kunze had on the sheriff’s office and beyond.

“He was a great deputy,” he said.

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