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New Maury County sheriff has unlikely background

Bucky Rowland Bucky Rowland
COLUMBIA, TN (WSMV) -

A couple of rocking chairs in the town park of Santa Fe in Maury County is where longtime K-9 Deputy Bucky Rowland launched his campaign with a catchy tune sung by his daughters.

Thursday night, the 39-year-old underdog became the surprise sheriff of Maury County.

Rowland has one of the most unlikely backgrounds for a sheriff. His father was a career criminal and his entire family died in the worst tragedy in county history.

In 1977, 42 people died, mostly of smoke inhalation at the Maury County Jail. Rowland's father, mother, grandmother, two uncles and an aunt were among the dozens killed.

"It's kind of like a Hallmark story," Rowland said. "You can't make this stuff up."

An orphan at age 2, Rowland was taken in by his widowed aunt who had four children of her own.

"We didn't have a lot but we had everything we needed," Rowland said.

Rowland grew up with hard work, influenced by two men who had no real idea how they influenced him.

"They all had Jesus Christ as their lord and savior," Rowland said. "They worked hard and they were all family men."

Rowland went to school, ran a successful business and then went into law enforcement.

Unlike so many men, Rowland knew exactly what he wanted to do: serve others. He even knows how he wants to be remembered.

"Someone who left people better than he found them," Rowland said.

Rowland said he wants to rehabilitate his prisoners and help them turn their lives around. He said if he can do it, so can they.

Copyright 2014 WSMV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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