Former state Rep. Dewayne Bunch has died more than a year after suffering a head injury while trying to break up a fight among students at Whitley County High School where he was a math teacher.
House Republican spokesman Mike Goins confirmed Bunch's death in a statement Wednesday afternoon.
"Dewayne truly represented someone who is committed to serving the public, whether it be as a school teacher, a member of the armed services, his church and his neighbors," the statement read.
Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear also commented on Bunch's death.
"Our thoughts and prayers are with his family," Beshear said.
The 50-year-old Bunch was injured when he intervened in the fight. He was struck by a stray punch and hit his head on the floor of the school cafeteria.
One of his former students, Alex Patrick, said he was saddened to hear of Bunch's death. He said the legislator never put himself first.
"You better believe it, no matter what he did, he was going to do it right," Patrick said.
Bunch resigned from the legislature in 2011. Voters in the 82nd District, which includes Whitley and parts of Laurel counties, chose his wife, Regina Bunch, as his replacement.
The teenagers who were involved in the fight were charged with assault.
According to Goins, no arrangements have been made for Bunch's funeral.