Pope County deputy’s widow thanks community for support, asks for continued prayers

(KSTP) -The wife of the Pope County deputy who was fatally shot after responding to a domestic call last weekend has shared a statement for the first time since his death.

Deputy Josh Owen was killed after Bryan Nygard opened fire when law enforcement tried to arrest him, the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension says. Another deputy was also injured, as was a Starbuck police officer. Nygard also died at the scene.

Thursday, Owen’s cousin, Josh Palmateer, read a statement from Owen’s wife, Shannon. She and Owen had been together for 18 years, including the past 12 in Pope County.

“The outpouring of love from our law enforcement family and our broader community has been amazing and I’m so grateful,” the statement said, adding, “Honestly, I’m overwhelmed. Our family and friends have run the gamut of emotions. We’ve smiled and laughed at memories and we’ve shed tears for the man who was stolen from our lives.”

While her statement acknowledged those who’ve reached out to help her family, it also highlighted the pain and anger they’re feeling.

“I’m angry that this happened. I’m angry that his beautiful life was cut short, and I’m angry that my son’s father was taken from him far too soon,” the statement said. “It wasn’t supposed to be this way.”

“There will forever be a hole in our family that Josh’s presence and light filled.”

Her statement also noted that the news coverage will fade and people will go back to their daily lives, but Owen’s family will always be affected by his loss. That’s why she asked the community to help keep Owen’s memory alive and pray for them and all law enforcement.

“As the days and weeks pass, I ask you to continue to lift us up in prayers as we go through the next few days, weeks and months and years.”

This story first appeared on KSTP-TV.