Cochise County Sheriff Larry Dever's death: Sheriffs Joe Arpaio, Paul Babeu react

PHOENIX - After the sudden death of Cochise County Sheriff Larry Dever, fellow Arizona sheriffs reached out to talk about his life and the loss of a "great" sheriff.

Dever, 60, was killed in a single-vehicle crash near Williams, Ariz. which was confirmed early Wednesday morning.

Maricopa County Sheriff Arpaio talked to ABC15 about how he knew Dever for "many, many years."

"He's a traditional border sheriff and has done a great job throughout the years," Arpaio said. "He covered that border as a federal official for many years. It's a tough job, and he worked that border. He did a great job. It's just a sad situation. My condolences go out to the family."

Sheriff Arpaio added that one of the things he liked best about Sheriff Dever is he fit the old fashioned Sheriff persona with his large cowboy hats and hard stance on immigration issues.

Arpaio said whoever takes over the Cochise Sheriff's office will have many challenges. "The Sheriff had a lot of history, everybody knew him, its a small county, but everybody knew him, so he had that relationship with the public, his constituents. I don't know if  you can replace that, it would take years to get that support."

ABC15 also received the following statement from Pinal County Sheriff Babeu:

"I'm shocked and saddened to hear of Larry Dever's death, he was my friend, a leader on border security and leader among Sheriffs. This is a great loss to Arizona, a true patriot has died and he will be sorely missed."

PCSO spokesman Elias Johnson said Babeu and Dever worked closely together on border security issues.

Other statements include a joint email from Senators John McCain and Jon Kyl:

"We were deeply saddened to learn about the sudden death of our friend Larry Dever. We spent a great deal of time at the border with Sheriff Dever and know first-hand his long commitment to keeping the people of our state safe. We also admired Sheriff Dever's strength to speak out when he believed more needed to be done to secure our border. Sheriff Dever was not only a leader in Cochise County, but also across Arizona and throughout the law enforcement community. Sheriff Dever was a man of honor, integrity, and selfless service to the State of Arizona. He will be greatly missed. Our thoughts and prayers are with Nancy, their sons, and the rest of Dever family."

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