Thank you cards, luminaries among ways to honor Deputy Pickett

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BOONE COUNTY, Ind. -- Driving through the streets of Boone County, the support for fallen Deputy Jacob Pickett, his family and law enforcement community is evident as families look to honor the deputy in their own touching ways.

Blue ribbons, blue lights and flags line streets and homes in tributes where words can't quite show the depth of appreciation for Deputy Pickett.

"I think we're all just feeling a loss right now, we want to be able to do something," Boone County resident Kristen Kelley said.

Kelley said Wednesday they plan to line Heritage Trail Park in Zionsville with luminaries in a memorial of Deputy Pickett. They plan to start setting up around 5:30 p.m. and leave the luminaries up for about 24 hours for people to see.

"We appreciate all that he did to support the community, to protect the community, we know he's still up there protecting us right now," Kelley said.

At the Lebanon Public Library, librarians have set up a thank you card writing station where families can write notes to first responders.

"Just to let them know we support them and we understand things are really hard right now but that we still really appreciate our first responders," librarian Abby Chumin said.

The library will accept the notes through March 9, then hand them out to the Boone County Sheriff's Office, Lebanon Police Department and Lebanon Fire Department.

"I think it's a way to combat the hurt that we're all dealing with right now. It's a positive way to thank those who go out for our community night after night, the people who don't always know if they're gonna get to come home to their families," librarian Nicole Thompson-Wethington said.

Outside the Boone County Sheriff's Office, the memorial for Deputy Pickett grows with notes, stuffed animals, flowers and countless other tributes.

"It's very touching, very heartwarming to know that the community's out there supporting us, they support us anyway," Boone County Deputy Ken Conley said. "Unfortunately the situations like this, it happens all too regularly nationwide, you see it more often."

Conley said his last memory of Pickett was when the deputy was on a traffic stop just hours before he was shot Friday.

"Then I actually drive by him because he's on my way to my other duty and I said, 'Are you okay?' And he's like, 'I'm good and it's a beautiful day.' And that's the last memory that I got of Jake and that's the one I'm always gonna carry in my heart," Conley said. "That's Jake. Jake was always upbeat. Even when he was having a bad day and you were, he was always trying to cheer you up."

Now, just as Pickett lifted up so many, the community is working to lift up each other.

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