South Florida native killed in Georgia

A South Florida native has been identified as one of two sheriff’s deputies killed in a shootout in an Atlanta suburb on Thursday night.

According to the Cobb County Sheriff’s Office, Jon Koleski, 42, and Marshall Ervin, 38, died after a firefight in Marietta just before 8 p.m.

Koleski graduated from Western High School in Davie in 1998. His mother still lives in Sunrise.

“It’s very real, but surreal at the same time, because part of me doesn’t want to believe it’s true,” Melissa Marchetti, Koleski’s younger sister said. “I just feel like a gaping hole. There’s like a void that’s never going to be filled.”

Authorities have arrested Christopher Golden and charged him with three counts of felony murder and three counts of aggravated assault of a police officer.

Koleski and Ervin originally arrived at the home to serve a warrant for Christopher Cook for felony theft.

“They were heading back to their cruiser and the suspect’s vehicle pulled up and just ambushed them,”Marchetti said.

“Inexpressible condolences go out to the families of the two heroes who gave their lives last night in this community,” Cobb County Police Chief Stuart VanHoozer said at a news conference Friday afternoon. “The families and friends and coworkers of the officers are in our thoughts.”

Koleski served three tours in Afghanistan and Iraq with the US Army before joining the Cobb County Sheriff’s Office. He had worked as a deputy with the county for 15 years.

Koleski’s family in South Florida plans to travel to Georgia on Tuesday to join his wife, Amy, for his funeral.

“Things like this happen in the movies, you hear it in the news, but you don’t picture that it’s going to happen to you,” Marchetti said.

The Cobb County Sheriff’s office has organized a crowdfunding campaign to support the officers’ families. Koleski’s family has also set up a a page on Gofundme. Those links are below:

https://cobbsheriffsfoundation.org/donations/donate-to-fallen-heroes/

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