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DeKalb County Sheriff Andy Clark, left, speaks with Sgt. Tracey Neill on Wednesday afternoon at the department office inside the courthouse in Maysville, Missouri. County voters will decide the fate of a half-cent sales tax Aug. 7 that would be devoted to school resource officers and to satisfy other law enforcement needs sought by the sheriff.

DeKalb County Sheriff Andy Clark died in a duty-related car crash Wednesday morning, according to the Missouri Sheriffs Association.

The Association said he was responding to aide one of his deputies when the crash occurred.

“Right now, what we’ve been told is that Sheriff Clark was responding to assist a deputy call and during that response, there was a traffic crash and he was transported from the scene and later died at Mosaic,” Buchanan County Sheriff Bill Puett said.

According to the Missouri State Highway Patrol, the crash happened as Clark was driving south on Missouri Highway 33, then crossed over to head east on US Highway 36. Robert Carpenter, 71, of Diller, Nebraska was driving east in a GMC SUV and hit the passenger side of Clark’s Chevy pickup causing both vehicles to go off the south side of the highway. According to the crash report, Clark wasn’t wearing a seat belt while Carpenter was.

The Missouri Sheriffs Association has already begun to use its benevolent fund to assist Clark’s family.

“I will say that every Sheriff throughout the state and their families are grieving for Sheriff Clark and his family. We are frankly at a loss for words as to this tragedy,” Lewis County Sheriff and the Association’s president, David Parrish said.

“Andy was a very good man and an outstanding sheriff,” Puett said. “He always had a smile on his face and wanted to help anybody. I just know everybody’s in shock and he’ll truly be missed. He was a great man and a great servant to the citizens of DeKalb County.”

Parrish also stated that “this is a stark reminder of the dangers that all law enforcement faces on a day to day basis.”

Maykayla Hancock can be reached at makayla.hancock@newspressnow.com. Follow her on Twitter: @NPNowHancock.