NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (WAVY) — As days pass, the community is learning more about the kind of person Officer Katie Thyne was.
The Newport News police officer was killed when she was dragged by a car during a traffic stop Thursday.
Thyne was active in her community as a basketball coach for the Boys and Girls Club — and participated in other worthy causes.
10 On Your Side’s Tamara Scott spoke to one of the last people who saw her alive — who said what many others have said in the wake of Thyne’s death: she had a smile on her face.
His name is Keith Ivy. He was rushing to help his daughter in need Thursday afternoon when he says Thyne pulled him over.
After some initial nervousness, he says she soothed him, said she’d pray for his family and sent him on his way. Moments later she was gone, and he says it’s something he’ll never forget.
“Having law enforcement behind you is a nervous situation, but that day it’s something different,” he said.
“When she approached me, she came with a smile, so I knew it was something genuine,” Ivy added.
“She went through the protocol that she normally does during her normal routine traffic stop,” he said.
He was traveling down 35th Street in a hurry.
“I told her I said hey I’m just trying to hurry up and get to my daughter, she blacked out in school. I’m just trying to rush her to the emergency room,” he said.
And while Thyne had a responsibilty to enforce the law, Ivy says he mostly saw her compassion. She let him go with a warning — before doing one last thing.
“She told me before leaving me that she’d pray for me and my daughter and hope that she gets well soon,” Ivy said.
“I’m a single father of three beautiful daughters and to see someone that actually cares and give a kind word of prayer means a lot,” he said.
When he realized later that she had died, it was another wave of emotions.
“I didn’t know her, but just being able to come across someone at that time for that moment and then hearing about the tragic of the loss of that individual was kind of devastating,” he said.
Ivy says his daughter is doing well, and after hearing more about who Thyne was, he wants to contribute to the work she was doing in the community.
He told WAVY News he hopes to talk with her family and the people in the Boys and Girls Club to be a mentor.