Paulding County Mourns Loss of Veteran Deputy

Paulding County Mourns Loss of Veteran Deputy
Deputy Allen Rakestraw

The Paulding County Sheriff’s Office is in mourning following the unexpected passing of Deputy Allen Rakestraw, a stalwart member of the force for nearly 14 years. Deputy Rakestraw, aged 43, passed away at his home on Thursday, February 22, 2024, after suffering a medical emergency.

Deputy Rakestraw, an 8th generation Paulding County resident, realized his lifelong dream of serving as a Deputy Sheriff in his hometown in September 2012. Graduating from basic mandate training at the North Central Georgia Law Enforcement Academy in June 2013, he became an integral part of the Uniform Patrol Division, dedicated to ensuring the safety of the county.

Aside from his patrol duties, Deputy Rakestraw also played a crucial role in maintaining law enforcement radios at the Sheriff’s Office, transitioning to a part-time role in September 2015 to focus on his general contracting company while still overseeing communications for the department until his passing.

Funeral arrangements for Deputy Rakestraw will be handled by Benson’s Funeral Home in Dallas, Georgia, with visitation scheduled for Tuesday, February 27, 2024, at New Season Church from 3:00 PM to 7:00 PM, followed by a service on Wednesday, February 28, 2024, at 11:00 AM, also at New Season Church. Interment will take place at Paulding Memorial Gardens following the service.

Sheriff Gary Gulledge expressed profound sorrow at the loss, describing Deputy Rakestraw as more than just a colleague but a dear friend and an essential figure in his journey to becoming Sheriff. Sheriff Gulledge remarked, “I am heartbroken by the loss of Allen. He was more than a Deputy, he was my friend. Allen was one of the driving forces behind my original campaign for Sheriff. Without his help, I don’t know if I would be our Sheriff today. I am forever indebted to Allen for his service to myself and our community.”