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DELTONA -- A long-time Volusia County Sheriff's deputy was found dead Friday, purportedly a victim of suicide.
"The Volusia County Sheriff's Office regrets to announce the untimely death of longtime deputy Carl "Pete" Willard," Sheriff's spokesman Gary Davidson said in a brief press release. "Willard was found dead in the backyard of his home in Deltona early Friday afternoon. Deputies were initially dispatched to the residence after receiving a call regarding a suicidal person."
Davidson said the cause of death is under investigation.
Willard's career with the Sheriff's Office initially spanned 30 years, prior to his retirement in December 2005, at the rank of sergeant. He returned to work with the Sheriff's Office in January 2007, as a part-time reserve deputy and is survived by his wife and two grown children -- a son and daughter, Davidson said.