Slain chief's family describes a kind man

Slain chief's family describes a kind man

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by Anne Yeager and KGW.com Staff

kgw.com

Posted on January 7, 2011 at 5:56 PM

Updated Saturday, Jan 8 at 9:58 AM

RAINIER, Ore. -- Slain Rainier Police Chief Ralph Painter's family said friday they are very sad that the light of their family is gone.

Painter's cousin Barbara and his aunt Irene told KGW they were along Highway 30 Thursday night to watch the procession of officers from all over the state and surrounding counties riding through Rainier to return Painter's body.

COMPLETE COVERAGE: Rainier police shooting

Painter's family was saddened to lose him but were not surprised when they found out what happened. They said Ralph always tried to diffuse a situation.

"He was a kind man. He was trying to resolve the situation and give him the benefit of the doubt," Barbara said. "Just knowing I’m not going to see him anymore."

"I pray for him," she said of suspect 21-year-old Daniel Butts. "I pray for his family. I’m sure that Ralph would forgive him."

"You couldn't help but love him when he was little and when he grew up. I feel for the person who did it, because he’s going to have to live with that," Irene said.

The Painters said they are going to miss Ralph the most during their family reunion. Every year they said the chief was the life of the party.

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