Spears served county since 2000
The law enforcement community and other first responders took the time to remember Constable Ken Spears, a longtime and beloved public servant, after his death last week.
Philadelphia Police Chief Eric Lyons said that Spears represented the camaraderie between local law enforcement and first responders across all agencies.
“Ken was here long before I was,” Lyons said. “Although he worked primarily in the county, the relationship between him and the police department was great. Always greeted with a smile and handshake.”
Services for Spears were held Wednesday, July 27, at McClain-Hays Chapel.
Leake County Sheriff Randy W. Atkinson was among those who officiated the service.
“It was with great pleasure that the Philadelphia Police Departments Honor Guard was able to be a part of his ceremony and present a 21-gun salute in his honor,” Lyons said.
Interment was in Linwood Cemetery.
Spears was among the Republican candidates for Sheriff in the 2019 election that Sheriff Eric Clark won. Clark said, “I think the world of him.” He said Spears passing affected many in his department.
“He is a very well thought of part of the law enforcement community,” Clark said. “A lot of people are hurting. He was a friend of everyone and well-known and well-liked.”
Clark said he was proud to say that he could guarantee Spears’ funeral procession was “well planned and well organized.”
The Philadelphia and Choctaw fire departments deployed ladder trucks to drape an American Flag over the funeral procession route on the bypass at Williamsville last week.
“It’s a honor to get to show respect to a great man, Mr. Ken Spears,” Philadelphia Fire Chief Pierce Clark said.
Spears was a lifelong resident of Neshoba County graduating from Neshoba Central High School in 1978.
Before joining law enforcement in 2000, he worked with Breland Building Supply for several years and then began driving a truck for Carlton Oil Company
He began his career in law enforcement as Constable Place II until his retirement in 2020.
During his service as constable, he also drove a school bus for the Neshoba Central School System which he enjoyed. He loved the kids, his family said.
Spears in 1986 was a founding member of the Linwood Fire Department where he served as a firefighter and board president. He was a member of Linwood Baptist Church and was a master mason in Henry Clay Lodge #485.
“There are really no words to express the magnitude of sadness this loss has brought for his family, the community, the county and the department,” a statement from the Linwood Volunteer Fire Protection District said.
“Please continue to pray for His precious family!! He was a great man!!”
He is survived by his wife of 42 years, Lanette Spears of Union and his sons, Wesley and Nathan.
Many in the community took to social media to honor Spears.
“There will never be another Ken Spears,” Alyssa McKenzie Craig said in a post. “Such a beautiful tribute to one of the best individuals that has ever represented Neshoba County. Love this man and this family.”
Angie Franklin Dearing said in a post that Spears was “one of the nicest men you would ever meet.” She said she last saw him as a Neshoba County Schools bus driver before her son, Nick Dearing, got his license.
“The last thing he told me was you’ve got a good boy there,” She said. “Nick thought the world of Mr. Ken. He’s touched a lot of lives in his time and he will never be forgotten in our community.”