Bolivar community says they're proud to have one of their own as state governor

BOLIVAR, Mo. When Governor Eric Greitens resigns, Lieutenant Governor Mike Parson will take over leading the state.

Parson, who lives on a farm in Polk County, is a former sheriff, state representative and senator.

We're told that Parson was on his way to Jefferson City. He got the call about what was happening while he was working on his farm.

"Governor Greitens is still the governor of the state of Missouri and I'm the lieutenant governor. We're going to function that way until Friday as the time comes," he says.

It was a bit of a chaotic afternoon for him and his team.

"He's going to be in the rest of the week and the weekend and his staff and we're sure going to try to come up with a game plan where we don't make any mistakes," says Kelli Jones, communications coordinator.

Parson says, "Right now we're still trying to just grasp everything like everybody else is."

About a hundred miles south, back in Parson's hometown of Bolivar the reaction was similar.

"Well it's been quite an afternoon. Everybody's proud of him. He's come a long way," says Steve Garretson, Parson's former next door neighbor.

He, like many others in town, say they had a feeling the former Polk County Sheriff would lead the state.

"Here lately it seemed like it was going to be possible but I never thought it would turn up this quick," he says.

Garretson says he hopes everything in Jefferson City will settle down now.

"Outside of Mr. Greitens' other problems I thought he did alright. I'm sure Mike will step in and take over and won't be an issue. I'm sure he can take care of everything without a problem," says Garretson.

Many others in the Bolivar community say they are proud to have one of their own leading Missouri.

"We've supported him all the way through. It couldn't happen to a better person," says Garretson.

Parson, "I feel good right now. I feel good. We're going to be fine in the future and we're going to move Missouri forward."

Lawmakers considered legislation that would allow a governor to appoint someone to fill that vacancy, but it was not passed.

Parson could appoint someone, but if it gets challenged in court, legal sources say it might not stand.