Border Patrol Agent Nicholas Ivie's family speaks out after his death near Naco, Arizona

The family of Border Patrol Agent Nicholas Ivie spoke to the media for the first time Thursday morning since he was shot and killed near the Arizona-Mexico border two days ago.

At least 30 family members flew to Arizona from Utah to help pay tribute to Ivie.

The family addressed the media during a press conference at Cochise College, a few miles from where he lived with his wife Christy and his two little girls in Sierra Vista.

"He was a wonderful father.  He loved to play with his kids," said Chris Ivie, Nick Ivie's brother.  

Chris said he was a "favorite uncle" among the family and loved to make people laugh.

"There's not a bad bone in his body," his brother Rick Ivie said.

Ivie left behind two little girls, ages 4 and 1.

"It's difficult when they ask for their dad and you can't really explain it that well," he said.  "They know something's going on, but they don't quite understand."

Family spokesman, Kevin Goates, told ABC15 that family members did not want to talk about the investigation during the news conference but instead share what kind of man Ivie was before he died.

Another agent was also injured during the attack, but he has been released from the hospital.

WHY IVIE JOINED BORDER PATROL

The family said Ivie joined the Border Patrol in 2008 after graduating from the fire academy and working as an EMT and as a paramedic.

"He always wanted to be in law enforcement," said Chris Ivie.  "His older brother Joel was here on the Border Patrol, and he thought he might like to try that out since he knew the language and he knew the people,"

Nick Ivie's brother, Joel, had joined the Border Patrol in 2003.

"It just seemed like a good fit, " said Chris Ivie, who explained that Joel and Nick worked together at times.

NICK IVIE IN MEXICO

When Nick Ivie was 19, he served a two-year mission in Mexico City for the Mormon Church.  "There he learned Spanish and developed a great love for the Mexican people," said a family spokesperson, Kevin Goates.

"Nick also loved his country and served proudly and diligently as a Border Patrol agent.  The great kindness, support and many acts of respect from the entire Border Patrol community are very much appreciated."

IVIE AS AN AGENT

Chris Ivie described  his brother's compassion and kindness for others by sharing a story about Nick Ivie's work as a Border Patrol agent.

There was a time, he said, when Nick Ivie encountered a pregnant woman who had been traveling with a small group in the desert.  She lost her shoes, said Chris Ivie.  

"Her feet were cut up and she just had them wrapped in rags, and she was in a pretty remote area and just couldn't make it any farther, and he carried that woman a mile and a half to where she could receive the proper help that she needed," Chris Ivie said, fighting tears.

"He really did love the people that he worked with," said Chris Ivie.  "He was a hero."

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