HENDERSON COUNTY, N.C. (WTVD) -- A western North Carolina deputy died from injuries Thursday afternoon following an early morning shootout that left the gunman dead.
The Henderson County Sheriff's Department announced Ryan Hendrix, 35, died after being shot in the face.
According to the department, deputies initially responded to a vehicle break-in in a community around 2:50 a.m. A resident told deputies that the homeowner and suspect were shooting at each other.
A gunman started shooting at deputies, hitting Hendrix. During the shootout, the suspect, now identified as Robert Ray Doss, Jr., was also shot and killed.
Deputy Hendrix was a Marine veteran who has two children, a 6-year-old boy and a 9-year-old girl. Hendrix was engaged and was set to get married next month, according to ABC-affiliate WLOS.
"Even in passing Ryan continues to exemplify a servant's heart. You see, Ryan was also an organ donor. He will continue to help strangers for a lifetime, even after making the ultimate sacrifice," the sheriff's department wrote in his passing. "Ryan's family wants everyone to know that, 'Ryan was doing the job he was born to do and he died doing the job he loved.'"