Family of fallen DeKalb County Sheriff’s deputy issues statement: ‘Our world has been turned upside down’

Family of Christina Musil expressed gratitude to community for support as they grieve

DeKalb County Sheriff’s Deputies remove the flag-draped gurney carrying the body of DeKalb County Sheriff’s Deputy Christina Musil from the Hearse Monday, April 1, 2024, at Butala Funeral Home following the processional honoring the fallen officer. Musil, 35, was killed Thursday while on duty after a truck rear-ended her police vehicle in Waterman.

SYCAMORE – In a statement released Tuesday, the family of late DeKalb County Sheriff’s deputy Christina Musil said their “world has been turned upside down,” and asked the public for space while they grieve Musil, who was killed in a car crash March 28.

Musil was killed after her police vehicle was rear-ended by a truck in Waterman in rural DeKalb County while on duty shortly about 10:30 p.m. March 28, police have said.

In a statement shared with Shaw Local News Network through the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office on Tuesday, Musil’s family said DeKalb County “lost a true community hero.”

“Our family appreciates all those who have affectionately gone out of their way to help us get through the most unnecessary, heartbreaking, painful, deplorable, tragic loss of our lives. We are deeply beholden and grateful to all of you,” Musil’s family said.

DeKalb County Sheriff's Deputy Christina Musil, 35, a five-year member of the office, was killed Thursday, March 28, 2024, after her squad car was rear-ended by a truck, according to the Illinois State Police. Musil also was a military veteran who served in Afghanistan, the sheriff's office said.

Deputy Christina “Beana” Musil, 35, a mother of three, was conducting what Sullivan called a stationary patrol when her Ford Explorer squad car was struck in the back by a Kenworth commercial truck about 10:39 p.m. Musil later died from her injuries at a nearby hospital, DeKalb County Sheriff Andy Sullivan said.

Illinois State Police public information officer Genelle Jones identified the truck driver Tuesday evening as Nathan P. Sweeney, 44, of DeKalb.

Sweeney was issued citations for failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident, improper lane usage and operating an uninsured motor vehicle, according to the ISP.

The police investigation remains open as of Tuesday, conducted by the ISP and the DeKalb County Coroner’s Office.

Musil, a U.S. Army National Guard veteran who served in Afghanistan from 2008 to 2009, was memorialized with a DeKalb County Sheriff’s vehicle placed on the lawn of the DeKalb County Courthouse on Friday. Over the weekend, the memorial grew as mourners left dozens of bouquets of flowers, stuffed animals, wreathes and other trinkets.

After a processional honoring Musil drew hundreds on Monday, DeKalb County Sheriff’s deputies saluted their fallen coworker, who was placed on a flag-draped gurney, as she was removed from the Hearse at Butala Funeral Home in Sycamore.

In their statement, the family also asked the public to mindful of what is posted and shared on social media as they begin their grieving process.

“Our world has been turned upside down, obliterated and hopelessly broken,” the family said in the statement.

A Go Fund Me account setup to support Musil’s children – ages 12, 11 and five – has raised $159,840, from 596 donations, as of 4 p.m. Tuesday.

Musil’s funeral will be held at Northern Illinois University’s Convocation Center, 1525 W. Lincoln Highway, DeKalb, on Thursday, and the public is invited. Public visitation will run from 10 a.m. to noon. The sheriff’s office will be closed all day for the funeral and reopen Friday.

A walk-through visitation for law enforcement is scheduled for 12:45 p.m. Thursday, and funeral services will begin at 1:30 p.m.

Sullivan said Tuesday he’s been gobsmacked by the amount of community support Musil’s family and his office have received over the past several days. Sullivan expressed deep gratitude on behalf of his for the compassion shown by the the public following Musil’s death.

Musil’s family expressed similar sentimentalities in their Tuesday statement.

“The community of DeKalb County came to a complete stop that dreadful morning,” the family said in the statement. “We are more than grateful for you all and we know that you too are feeling the loss. The Police Departments – all of them throughout Illinois – their unconditional, voluntary, all-encompassing service to Christina, our family and extended family is meticulously carried out and ongoing.”

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