In my mind he is tall, fair haired with broad shoulders, and hulking arms. He is not overweight, but has a strong massive build. He is physically intimidating. He was under twenty when he became Sheriff. He was selected for the job because at that age he was easily manipulated and controlled.
Throughout Silent Ties he is never violent. He is an observer and not a perpetrator. He watches when Roy kills the boy on Main Street. He doesn’t participate, but he doesn’t intervene. When the horsemen pay a visit to James he is not one of them. He is watching from a distance in his police car. If necessary, would he have protected James and Daddy? He frequently patrols past Missy’s house. Daddy takes it as a warning, but perhaps it was to protect the families. When Tucker James dies he doesn’t investigate the murder. He won’t get involved. Did he support the actions of hatred, or was he also afraid of people like Uncle Roy? Was he really strong and brave as his size portrayed or living in fear?
There were other young women in town he could have pursued. Why did he choose Missy? Her father stood against the Klan and bigotry. She was not raised to support prejudice. She was several years younger and wasn’t considered beautiful. They didn’t interact or have conversations. What was the attraction?
Missy implied he assumed she was desperate. It appeared no one else was interested. But maybe that wasn’t the reason. An association with Missy meant a connection to her family. In their little town Daddy was highly respected. Momma came from a prominent family. Perhaps he wanted to be seen in different light – as a good man others could look up to.
“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” Santayana