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Richfield father, police officer carries on the legacy of late wife after sudden death

Posted at 8:10 AM, Aug 30, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-30 10:57:30-04

RICHFIELD, Utah — Richfield, Utah is a small town with a big heart. The FOX 13 News Dream Team banded together with the community to surprise a father of four and carry on the legacy of the woman he loved.

Candice Thompson was a loving wife, mother and friend when she suddenly lost her life. In 2022, Thompson was hiking with her family when a cliff-side gave way and the young woman everyone adored was gone way too soon.

"She was very thoughtful and giving to all that she knew," said Octavia Horton, mother to Candice.

"We've received so much support from this community and beyond it's just been incredible and it continues today," said Russell Horton, Candice's father.

Candice's husband, Colton Thompson, along with his in-laws, is now raising four little kids without the help of his devoted wife.

Thompson serves as the school resource officer at Richfield High School, where his colleagues describe him as someone who always has your back.

"It's important that we have his back too," said Jourdan Watts, who nominated Colton. "He has our back when we need it."

The FOX 13 Dream Team wanted to help show the Thompson family just how much their community supports him.

With the help of Mountain America Credit Union, students and staff gathered in the high school gym to surprise Thompson with a getaway for his family.

"This is just one small show of support [that] your community loves you and is here for you," said FOX 13's Amy Nay.

The Thompson family was gifted the opportunity to get away to Salt Lake City, complete with meal vouchers, a hotel stay and tickets to popular attractions.

Besides her devotion to her family, Candice also had a passion for cosmetology as she worked in her mother's Richfield salon.

The Dream Team also provided a paid year of tuition to Snow College in Candice's name for an aspiring cosmetology student who will be handpicked by Colton.

"This community means a lot," Officer Thompson said. "They say I make an impact on them but I don't know that they truly understand the impact that they've had on me."