The 25-year law enforcement veteran, Columbus Police Department (CPD) Capt. Stacey Deans, died at Baldwyn Nursing Facility on Tuesday morning, Aug. 27, after a lengthy illness. Lee County Coroner Carolyn Green confirmed that he died of natural causes, according to The Dispatch.

Capt. Deans, 53, leaves behind his wife, Yolanda Bounds, four children and four grandchildren.

The Chicago native, who was hired to lead the CPD Criminal Investigation Division, Ohio, in June 2018, had a severe spinal chord compression that left him mostly paralyzed on his left side. He had been on medical leave from CPD since early May.

On May 6, he underwent surgery at North Mississippi Medical Center in Tupelo and then was in intensive care for more than a week. He left the hospital in June and was undergoing physical therapy at the facility in Baldwyn since that time, The Dispatch reported.

According to his obituary, Capt. Deans spent his life working as a police officer at Moss Point City Police Department, a sheriff’s deputy at Lowndes County Sheriff’s Department, an investigator at the Attorney General’s Office, assistant chief at Scooba Police Department, and finally serving as captain of the Columbus Police Department. 

The Columbus Community Benefit committee and the mayor’s office hosted a fundraiser to help him with his medical expenses on Saturday, Aug. 24, just one week before his death.

“My family means the world to me and I put my life on the line because I want a better world for them and the rest of us to live,” Deans said on the fundraising page.

“Captain Deans attended the event and he was strongly encouraged by the love shown to him by the community,” Columbus Mayor Robert Smith said in a statement on Facebook.

“During his work with our city, we came to know and love him as a kind and caring gentleman. He used his lifetime of experience in law enforcement to help others every day. He was always focusing on others in his family and professional life,” Smith said. “My condolences and prayers are with his family and friends during this time. The work of Captain Deans will continue with those he trained and led in Columbus. We will miss him.”