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South Louisiana retired deputy drowns while saving his dog from pond

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The Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office is mourning one of their own after retired Lt. Sam Vitter drowned on Sunday in the Spanish Oaks pond while trying to save his dog reported

On Sunday morning, the sheriff's office responded to a report from a neighbor in Prairieville's Spanish Oaks section about a set of keys, a barking little dog, and a pair of shoes lying on the edge of the Spanish Oaks pond.

Authorities went door to door looking for the owner of the dog and the personal items, and did not realize at the time, that Sam Vitter lived on a street behind the pond. Vitter, who retired in December, was a 32 year veteran of the Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office.

It is believed Vitter jumped into the pond to save his dog when the Yorkshire terrier jumped in while chasing wildlife.

The Prairieville Fire Department, the Gonzales Dive Team and the Ascension Parish deputies recovered Lt. Vitter's body from the pond late Sunday afternoon.

According to the, Sheriff Jeff Wiley stated:

“Sam was not only a long serving deputy in our department. He was a great leader who devoted his entire life to serving others. This is a great loss to this department."

Lt. Vitter is survived by his wife, who was also a former Ascension Parish Sheriff's deputy and one son.

Rest in peace Lt. Vitter.

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