Vail Daily letter: Why Hoy has my vote for sheriff |

Vail Daily letter: Why Hoy has my vote for sheriff

Erik Williams
Vail, CO, Colorado

Someone once said, “Great leaders define themselves by the people with whom they surround themselves.” I believe this holds true in the case of our County Sheriff, Joe Hoy, and the fine men and women he has chosen to surround himself with, specifically Undersheriff Jeff Layman.

I have had the opportunity to get to know Sheriff Hoy through my job of hosting the “Morning Show” on Channel 16, Plum TV, and have found him to be a capable, intelligent and caring man. In the more than 10 years I’ve lived in this valley, I’ve had the opportunity to get to know Undersheriff Layman very well through my position as youth and family minister at Mount of the Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Vail.

Jeff was one of the first friends I made in this valley and continues to be one of the people I trust and respect most in this world. I’ve had the opportunity to witness his compassion, caring and leadership in a number of different occasions. Let me take you back two summers.

Jeff volunteered to come on a high school mission trip I was leading to some of the poorer parts of southern Florida where multiple hurricanes had left lasting destruction to homes and trees. We took a group of 30 youth to work and serve.

Jeff proved to not only be the hardest worker we had, but one who was skilled at encouraging others, talking with the locals and taking the time to teach others how to use certain tools and work hard when it would have been much easier for him to do it himself.

Every night, we would return to the church where we were staying and clean up, decompress and enjoy each other’s company. One night, while playing with a group of high school boys, Jeff accidentally broke his foot. I remember being stunned that his first reaction was that he was ashamed that he wouldn’t be able to help to the degree he had been.

After he came back from the hospital with crutches and a boot on his foot, I gave him the option of returning home to recover, and he laughed at that idea.

For the rest of the trip, I watched him push himself just as hard as before, even though it was obvious he was in pain, and really become a light that others found themselves drawn to. That stands out in my mind as just one of the hundreds of examples I could give about the quality of character in Layman.

In the upcoming election, I will be voting for Sheriff Joe Hoy. I feel he is a competent and trustworthy public servant.

I know that my vote will also include the great men and women he has chosen to surround himself with, including Layman, and it is that idea that gives me most comfort.

I feel blessed to raise my family in a safe and caring community.

Erik Williams


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