HALL COUNTY, Ga. — He was the quintessential family man. That's how friends and loved ones are remembering Hall County Deputy Nicolas Blane Dixon, 28, who was killed in the line of duty late Sunday night.
Dixon was attempting to stop a stolen car when he was shot by one of four suspects in the area of Jesse Jewell Parkway and Highland Avenue between 11 and 11:15 p.m., investigators said.
Dixon, who went by his middle name, had been with the department for three years.
He got his first job before he could legally drive, working for a local veterinarian. The North Hall High School graduate eventually landed a job at a local manufacturing company, but he was not cut out for life behind a desk, his father said.
“About three years ago, he came to me and said he wanted to follow his dream and become a police officer,” Fred Dixon said. “I always wanted my sons to do what makes them happy, so we were real supportive.”
"It was his dream (to become a police officer)," his wife, Stephanie Dixon, told our investigative partners at The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
She grew up living next door to her husband, but they didn’t begin dating until they were out of high school, she said.
Dixon’s cousin, Chris Cannon, said the deputy loved being in law enforcement.
“You know when you’re passionate about something and you work it into every conversation? That was Blane,” Cannon said. “You could be talking about coconuts and he’d turn it into something about his job. He loved what he did.”
Stephanie Dixon said the only thing her husband loved more than his job was being a father.
“He was the best dad there was,” she said.
The couple have two children, a 9-year-old son and a 4-month-old son.
Hall County Sheriff's Officer set up a fund for Dixon's family:
Leave your condolances for Deputy Dixon's family on Facebook:
“He loved his kids. He loved his wife. He loved his family. Family meant the world to this guy,” uncle Murray Odom said about Dixon. “He’d help anybody that needed help.”
On top of being family, Odom said Dixon also held another title for him: hero.
“He should be honored because he was out doing a job that most of us won’t do, most of us wouldn’t do, and he was doing it to make it safe for you, for me, for anybody.”
Hall County Sheriff Gerald Couch said he had hoped he would make it through his career without losing one of his deputies. Regardless, he made a pledge to the Dixon family.
“We will make sure we take care of his family just like he took care of us,” Couch said.
Visitation will be held at Memorial Park Funeral Home on Tuesday and Wednesday from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m.
Dixon’s funeral will be held Thursday at 11 a.m. at Free Chapel Worship Center, followed by his internment at Memorial Park Cemetery.
Anyone with information on Sunday night's incident is asked to call the Hall County Sheriff's Office tip line at 770-533-7693.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution contributed to this article.
Cox Media Group