BARDSTOWN, Ky. (WKYT) - Judging from a growing collection of flowers on a patrol car, it's easy to see just how big an impact Officer Ellis made on Bardstown. In fact, even people who had found themselves in hot water with the officer came out to pay tribute to him because they respected him so much.
It hasn't sunk in yet for some of the officers.
"Still I can't believe that he's gone...that I won't walk into that police department and see him. It's just tough," said Patrolman Tom Blair, who helped train Ellis.
All afternoon, people came to the police department to drop off flowers and comfort one another
"He was just so friendly," said Debbie Ballard. Ballard met Officer Ellis under less than ideal circumstances. He showed up at her house to arrest a relative one day.
"I was just so overwhelmed by his niceness, his politeness, his genuine concern," she said.
Ballard was crushed when she found out what had happened to him.
"When I saw Officer Ellis' picture pop up, I just went immediately all to pieces, I just went, no...no, not him, not him," she said.
The whole community, it seems, is rallying around the officer, but none more so than his brothers and sisters on the force who can think only of Ellis' wife and two young boys.
"His boys at home...and as far as I'm concerned, I've got a new sister, I've got two nephews that I have to look out for now...and I will," said Blair.
Flowers aren't the only things people have been bringing. The chief said many are bringing in donations to go to Ellis' family and for the reward fund to help find his killer.