Jessamine County paramedic John Mackey, who was struck by a car last week, died Monday, and his former supervisors remembered him as a caring professional.
"He was a great employee, a dependable employee," said Jerry Domidion, former director of Jessamine County's Emergency Medical Services. "He was fun to be around and he took his job seriously.
"He was one that liked to joke and kid and cut up, but when it came time for patient care he was one to take his job seriously and do the patient care that needed to be done." .
Mackey, 40, was struck by a car on East Maple Street in Nicholasville on Thursday night as he stepped into the street from between two parked cars, Nicholasville police said. Survivors include his wife, Janine, and three children.
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"He was bigger than life but if he ever dealt with children he was a big teddy bear," Domidion said. "The kids could relate to him."
Wendell Hatfield, another former Jessamine EMS director, said Mackey had a dry, quick-witted sense of humor. "He was so dry it kind of caught you off guard. It would take you about five or 10 minutes to realize what he was alluding to," Hatfield said.
Mackey was a regular at Renaissance festivals and enjoyed expressing his Scottish heritage and wearing kilts.
"He wore those quite a bit," Hatfield said.
His close-knit group of friends, to whom he was simply "Mackey," took to Facebook in an outpouring of remembrances of his warm, down-to-earth personality.
Jessamine County Judge-Executive David West announced during a vigil Sunday that Mackey was not expected to survive and probably would be taken off life support Monday.
The Jessamine County Emergency Management Agency announced Mackey's death in the following Facebook post:
"Over the past few days our community has experienced the pain of knowing one of our own lay fighting for his life at UK Hospital.
"I have witnessed prayer, compassion and support for paramedic John Mackey's family and the emergency services family of Jessamine County by the thousands.
"This fight was too much for John to battle on his own along with the injuries he sustained when he was struck by a vehicle in downtown Nicholasville.
"John has stepped out of the ring and thrown down the gloves not before giving his all in one last lifesaving act of donating his organs to someone else who may be lying in some other hospital waiting for a match.
"John Mackey will live on in our hearts and we shall never forget him or his contributions to this community."
Betts & West Funeral Home in Nicholasville is in charge of funeral arrangements.