NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Carol Mills has been struggling ever since her husband, country singer Wayne Mills, went to the Pit and Barrel bar to do what he did best off-stage, network and hang out with friends.
"He just had just something in him that was so natural and made everyone feel like they were the most important special person in the room," she said Saturday. "My son and I have lost our hero."
Officials with the Metro Nashville Police Department said in the early morning hours of November 23, Mills and bar owner Chris Ferrell got into a fight when Mills lit a cigarette in a non-smoking area. They said Ferrell shot him in the head, claiming self-defense. It took investigators two-weeks to charge him with 2nd degree murder.
"I hope that the truth will come out and justice will be served," Carol Mills said.
For hours she had no idea Wayne was clinging to life because at first police misidentified him. They later released an apology for the mix-up, though Carol said she's never received a formal apology.
When she finally got to her husband, the last few moments revealed something she never knew. She discovered he was an organ donor who saved five other lives.
"I believe it was his pancreas, his liver, his kidneys and his heart. So there's comfort in thinking that his heart never stopped beating," she said.
The couple has a seven-year-old son, Jack, who Carol has tried to focus on while being showered with support by people here in Music City, and Wayne's hometown in Arab, Alabama.
"I knew he had a lot of friends, but until this tragedy I had no idea and I don' think he even knew how big of an impact and maybe even how famous he actually was," she said.
Mills declined to talk specifics about the case, but said every time Ferrell is in court she will be hoping to get justice for her husband, who died senselessly.
"When I married him I vowed I would be there for everything, and I will be there for everything," she said
Ferrell will make his first court appearance Monday. His defense attorney, David Raybin, said Saturday his client will plead not guilty and ask for his $300,000 bond to be reduced.
Students in the Academy of Energy and Power at Maplewood are busy getting ready for next week's Project Expo and had the opportunity to show it off some of their projects to Tennessee Congressman Jim Cooper.