The Fallen Valley Officer’s Memory Lives On Through Music

HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) — It has been nearly five months since Bridgewater College officer John Painter and campus security officer JJ Jefferson were killed in the line of duty on campus from college.

Jacob and Austin Painter, John Painter’s nephews, are part of the Blood Brothers band and ensure their uncle’s memory lives on.

“We just hold on to each other and love each other to get through this, but it will always just be a hole that our family will miss forever,” Austin said.

“Yeah, it’ll never go away,” Jacob said.

A few days after Painter’s death, Jacob and Austin wrote the song Till we Meet Again. He was executed during the funeral ceremony of the two valley officers.

“I can’t write lyrics to save my life and I was like, ‘What did me and Uncle John have?'” Jacob said. “He definitely helped us write that one.”

The Painter brothers met Isabel Bauer and Madison Kibler, who are both digital media students at Bridgewater College. With their help, the Till we Meet Again music video was created.

The video includes videos and photos of John with his family and friends. The Blood Brothers shot the video at Henleys Lake in Crozet, where their uncle spent a lot of time with his family.

“Editing the footage, stitching it together and seeing the final product…I feel like I know John even though I’ve never done it,” Baurer said. “It just makes me more grateful to him and the sacrifice he was willing to make.”

Since their uncle’s death, the Blood Brothers have performed the song for the valley community.

“Everybody goes through something like that at some point in their life and I think and I think a lot of people can relate to the song,” Austin said. “The community as a whole has been awesome this whole time.”

Music always brings people together and helps keep their uncle’s memory alive.

“It kind of bridged a lot of Bridgewater students with the Painter family, because they just got a better look at who John was,” Baurer said.

To see the Till we Meet Again video clip, click here.

Copyright 2022 WHSV. All rights reserved.

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