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Community mourns loss of Draper Police Sgt. Johnson

DRAPER, Utah (ABC 4 Utah) - Love, support, and sorrow fill the growing memorial for Draper Police Sgt. Derek Johnson.
DRAPER, Utah (ABC 4 Utah)- Love, support, and sorrow fill the growing memorial for Draper Police Sgt. Derek Johnson. His sister-in-law Amber Sidwell knew Derek for decades.

"He was such a good guy and he loved his job. He worked so hard," said Amber Sidwell.

But 19 year old TJ West didn't know Derek but Officer Johnson who he says tried to desperately to keep him on the right track.

"Every single time I could think of i was doing something wrong it seemed like he always turned the corner and was there and he knew all of us by name," said TJ West.

The man we've heard called a devoted husband and father, West
says equally devoted himself to the force and saving high risk youth.

"He gave our parents personal cell phone numbers to call him even when he was off duty no matter what the time was we could always call him," said West.

West says Sgt. Johnson was the father-figure he didn't have growing up; the man responsible for the man he's becoming. That's why West says he'll always be grateful.

"He was a diff officer. he cared about you. he protected and serve," said West.

Sgt. Johnson leaves behind a wife and son. Blue, white, and yellow ribbons in Draper and his hometown of Saratoga Springs wrapped around trees represent the arms of the police force and community wrapped around the family to support them.

"You just don't think it will happen to you. You just cry for those families and we are all just kind of in shock," said Sidwell.

Sidwell says Sgt. Johnson left a lasting mark on his family, the force, and the kids who needed his tough love.

Some of the people we spoke who came to the memorial Monday tell ABC 4 Utah they knew Sgt. Johnson from school or community events. Others say they didn't know him at all, but felt the need to thank him for his service.
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