Remembering Dowell

Published 10:16 am Thursday, February 7, 2019

The death of Virginia State Police (VSP) Trooper Lucas B. Dowell has brought an outpouring of response not only from those who knew and loved him but from those in The Herald coverage area and all over the state.

Dowell, 28, was a member of the Virginia State Police Tactical Team and graduated the Virginia State Police’s 122nd Basic Session in November 2014. Dowell is the 66th person in the VSP department to die in the line of duty.

At the time of his death in a shooting at Cumberland County, Dowell was assisting the Piedmont Regional Drug and Gang Task Force with executing a search warrant at a residence outside the Town of Farmville.

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The Piedmont Regional Drug and Gang Task Force includes members of Farmville Police Department, Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office, Longwood University Police Department and Buckingham County Sheriff’s Office. The task force contains loved ones and friends.

Corey Johnson, 44, a Cumberland resident who was a suspect in the Monday incident, died at the scene.

There aren’t words that can adequately express the pain Dowell’s loved ones are experiencing. For those who may not know Dowell personally but work in his field, or their loved ones, a similar fear and pain must exist.

The response from friends, from strangers, from co-workers, from families has been nothing short of extraordinary. A short time online reveals that people have also placed flowers and wreaths at state trooper vehicles, including one at Farmville Police Department. Businesses have offered memorials and fundraisers for those affected by Dowell’s death. People have sent prayers, well wishes, thoughts and shared their own pain.

The work Dowell accomplished in his daily life will not be forgotten. His empathy, sense of humor and dedication to service reported by Dowell’s loved ones are qualities that we should strive to uphold ourselves.

The Herald sends its deepest condolences to everyone affected by this tragedy.

A release from Virginia State Police cites that donations can be made to the Virginia State Police Association – Emergency Relief Fund (ERF) in lieu of flowers. To learn more, visit