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Montgomery County deputy will be remembered for his smile

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CHRISTIANSBURG (WSLS 10) - The Montgomery County Sheriff's Office is mourning the loss of one of its leaders.

Lieutenant Lewis "Louie" Heslip died suddenly Tuesday. He was found unresponsive by his bicycle after an off-duty ride.

Sheriff Hank Partin said bike riding, working out, and being outdoors were some of Heslip's favorite things to do. Partin also said Heslip was one of his office's finest leaders.

Heslip joined the sheriff's office in 1998, and he soon became a patrol commander. He often volunteered at the animal shelter, and was a supporter of 'Help Save the Next Girl.'

Police Chaplain and Blacksburg Baptist Church Pastor Tommy McDearis met Heslip about 15 years ago. He said if there is one thing he would want his friend to know, it is that he left the world a better place.

"You did a great job. You were a good friend to the community, a good friend to your friends," said McDearis. "You made a difference in this town and with the people you knew and cared about."

An official cause of death has not yet been released.