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'A tremendous loss': St. Johns County deputy, high school resource officer dies after battle with COVID-19

Jody Hull was with the agency for four years and most recently served as the Youth Resource Deputy at St. Augustine High School.

ST. JOHNS COUNTY, Fla. — The St. Johns County Sheriff's Office is mourning the loss of one of its deputies who passed away Saturday after battling COVID-19.

The sheriff's office said Deputy Jody Hull died early Saturday morning. Hull had been sick for weeks and had been intubated for a while. 

He was with the agency for four years and most recently served as the Youth Resource Deputy at St. Augustine High School. 

Jo Ellen Parkey has two kids who attend St. Augustine High School. She says Hull made it a goal to get to know every student in the building.

“He is involved in the lives of 1,600 kids. So on a Friday night when some law enforcement officer's shift is done. He’s over here watching the football game," said Parkey. 

Parkey says Hull's death was so sudden and tragic and it’s going to leave a hole in the building. 

“He understood the importance of a police presence being a positive thing," said Parkey.

St. Augustine principal Dr. DeArmas Graham sent out a letter and voice recording announcing Hull's death to parents and students. Graham said Hull was "surrounded by his family" when he passed. Counselors will be at the school on Monday to provide support to students.

Prior to his time serving St. Johns County, Hull also served with the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office for four years.

“Deputy Hull positively impacted the lives of so many St. Augustine High School students as a Youth Resource Deputy. He was passionately dedicated to making a difference in the lives of the youth around him,” Sheriff Hardwick said. “Deputy Hull was a valued member of our St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office family and will be greatly missed.”

Hull's passing is described as a tremendous loss for the sheriff's office, according to a statement released Saturday afternoon.

You can read the agency's full statement below on the passing of Deputy Hull.

It is with great sadness we announce that St. Johns County Deputy Jody Hull passed away earlier this morning.

Deputy Hull was a four-year member of the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office and most recently served as the Youth Resource Deputy at St. Augustine High School. Prior to serving with the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office, Deputy Hull served the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office for four years.

“Deputy Hull positively impacted the lives of so many St. Augustine High School students as a Youth Resource Deputy. He was passionately dedicated to making a difference in the lives of the youth around him,” Sheriff Hardwick said. “Deputy Hull was a valued member of our St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office family and will be greatly missed.”

This is a tremendous loss for the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office. Please join us in lifting up Deputy Hull’s family, friends, and colleagues in your prayers as we all process this loss. We also ask that you please respect the family’s privacy during this time.

It is with great sadness we announce that St. Johns County Deputy Jody Hull passed away earlier this morning. Deputy...

Posted by St. Johns County Sheriff's Office on Saturday, August 21, 2021

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