Courthouse security guard killed in crash

Published 11:00 pm Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The mood at the Pike County Courthouse was somber Tuesday as the courthouse “family” mourned the lost of one of its own.

Lige Hester, a courthouse security guard for three years, lost his life in an automobile wreck on Monday morning.

Lige Hester, a courthouse security guard for three years, lost his life in an automobile wreck on Monday morning.

Pike County Probate Judge Wes Allen said that everyone at the courthouse was deeply saddened by the news of Hester’s death.

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“Lige was a good man and he was well liked,” Allen said. “He cared about the security of the county and he was committed to public service. He was dedicated to his work. He will be greatly missed.”

John Dillard, a courthouse security guard and longtime friend of Hester, said that everybody at the courthouse was walking around Monday with tears in their eyes.

We’re all still in shock, stunned,” Dillard said. “Lige was a good friend to all of us and he is going to be missed.”

Dillard said Hester was known throughout the county for his music.

“Lige loved two things, working at the courthouse and playing his music,” Dillard said.

“He played country music and the old rock ’n roll music. He played Ray Charles and Pat Boone, all the early ’60s music. Music was important to him and he was willing to share his talent with others.”

Glenda Fayson, office manager at the Colley Senior Complex, said Hester was a regular performer at the seniors’ Saturday night dances.

“We were devastated when we heard about Lige’s death. He was a favorite around here,” Fayson said. “Lige loved to entertain and we loved for him to entertain us. He’d come out dressed as Elvis and we all got a kick out of that. He could sing any kind of music. We didn’t pay him much so he didn’t come for the money. He got a lot of pleasure out of doing for others. Lige was an all around good person. He had a big heart and we are going to miss him because he was a part of the Colley Senior Complex.”

Randy Ross, Pike County veteran’s affairs officer, said he had an opportunity to see and talk with Hester almost every day at the courthouse.

“He was friendly and upbeat and just a good person to be around,” Ross said. “He was involved in the community through is music. He performed several times at the Peanut Butter Festival and at other venues around the county. He always put on a good show.”

Hester and his band performed at a charity event at the Pike County Fairgrounds Saturday.

“Lige was on top of the world Saturday,” said Ross, the leader of the American Legion Line Dancers that also performed at the event. “He had a good time. We all did. You never know when it’s the last time that you’ll see anybody. Saturday will be a great memory of a good friend.”

Hester, 65, was born in Pike County and was a graduate of Charles Henderson High School. He worked at the shirt factory in Troy after graduating from high school and he worked with the highway department before going into law enforcement.

According to State Troopers, Hester was part of a three-vehicle crash about 10:48 Monday morning on U.S. Highway 231 near the 170-mile marker. Hester was killed when the 2005 Ford Escape he was driving northbound left the roadway, crossed the median and collided with a southbound 2012 Kenworth tractor-trailer. A third vehicle, a 2011 Kia Optima, struck debris from the wreckage. Hester was not wearing his seatbelt and was pronounced dead at the scene. The other drivers were uninjured. The crash caused the closure of the roadway until about 6 p.m. State Troopers continue to investigate.