May 07, 2011

Missouri's fallen law enforcement officers honored at State Capitol during annual ceremony

Five officers killed in the line of duty during 2010 are remembered

Five Missouri law enforcement officers who died in the line of duty during 2010 were memorialized today at a ceremony at the Law Enforcement Memorial, on the north grounds of the State Capitol, overlooking the Missouri River.
The names of Chief Paul Jeffrey Fricke, Sergeant Joseph George Schuengel, Deputy Donald McCutcheon, Officer David Aaron Haynes and Officer Dan De Kraai were added to the Law Enforcement Memorial Wall. The names of two other Missouri law enforcement officers who died before 2010 were also added to the Law Enforcement Memorial Wall: Sheriff  Bernard Joseph Berghager and Officer Glennon Robert Fernau.
"The officers we memorialize today came from very different law enforcement agencies and communities, but they were united in the commitment that they made to serve, protect, and to make their fellow citizens safer," said Gov. Jay Nixon. "The brave men and women of law enforcement are society's true heroes and role models because of their devotion to duty, their valorous service and selfless sacrifice.”
"The officers we honor today, like all in law enforcement, knew the risks that came each day when they put on their uniform and badge," said Department of Public Safety Director John M. Britt. "Each of them made the ultimate sacrifice to protect their fellow Missourians and to make their communities better places to live. We can never repay the debt we owe them and their families.” 
Families of the fallen and law enforcement agencies from across Missouri participated in the annual event by placing wreaths at the memorial wall. 
On Friday, May 6 a candlelight vigil in honor of all Missouri law enforcement officers who have died in the line of duty was held at the Law Enforcement Memorial.  
Photographs from today's ceremony are on the Department of Public Safety Flickr site. The photo set is available at:
Here are the law enforcement officers whose names were added to the memorial wall this year:
Bernard Joseph Berghager End of Watch: June 8, 2007 Rank: Sheriff Department: Ralls County Sheriff's Department Cause: Heart attack Age: 67 Years of Service: 10
Sheriff Berghager suffered a fatal heart attack at work after executing a search warrant late into the night the evening before. The residence being searched had an extremely high interior temperature, and Sheriff Berghager had to step outside several times to catch his breath. The next morning he arrived at the office for work, and hours later collapsed on the floor. He was transported to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead.
Glennon Robert Fernau End of Watch: May 29, 2009 Rank: Police Officer Department: Florissant Police Department Cause: Complications after a fall Age: 44 Years of Service: 3
While performing a security check, Officer Fernau fell down a flight of concrete stairs causing numerous abrasions to his head, face and hands, as well as severe pain in his arms, shoulders and hips. After the fall his right arm was left paralyzed and he experienced constant pain, and he eventually lost his job due to his permanent restrictions. Determined to get back on the job, Fernau underwent two surgeries in order to help him regain use of his arm and alleviate pain. After the second surgery, Fernau suffered from complications and died the following day.
Donald McCutcheon End of Watch: February 8, 2010 Rank: Deputy Sheriff Department: Clark County Sheriff's Office Cause: Heart attack Age: 36 Years of Service: 1
Deputy McCutcheon suffered a fatal heart attack after reporting to work on Monday, Feb. 8. After answering several calls of service he was clearing the front steps of snow to make it accessible to the public. Minutes after he began shoveling he felt ill and drove himself to a nearby rescue squad. Upon arrival, EMS personnel evaluated Deputy McCutcheon's condition and he collapsed. Paramedics immediately performed life saving measures and transported him to the hospital where he was pronounced dead.
David Aaron Haynes End of Watch: March 24, 2010 Rank: Police Officer Department: St. Louis Police Department Cause: Automobile accident Age: 27 Years of Service: 1
Officer Haynes was involved in an automobile accident while pursuing a burglary suspect. During his patrol, Officer Haynes recognized the car of a burglary suspect. After turning on his lights and siren, the burglary suspect fled. During the pursuit, Officer Haynes entered an intersection, where he was hit by an oncoming vehicle. Officer Haynes was transported to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
Paul Jeffrey Fricke End of Watch: August 27, 2010 Rank: Chief of Police Department: Hawk Point Police Department Cause: Automobile accident Age: 37 Years of Service: 5
Chief Fricke was killed in a single car crash during his patrol on the morning of Aug. 27. He was driving down the highway when his car slipped off the right side of the road. Chief Fricke overcorrected, crossed the highway and hit a utility pole on the left side of the road. He was pronounced dead on the scene by paramedics.
Dan D. De Kraai End of Watch: September 15, 2010 Rank: Police Officer Department: St. Joseph Police Department Cause: Gunshot Age: 35 Years of Service: 4
Officer De Kraai was fatally shot after another officer's handgun discharged during a break at a training course. During the break, a fellow officer was demonstrating something with his handgun. The officer's handgun accidently discharged, striking Officer De Kraai in the back. Officer De Kraai was transported to a hospital where he was pronounced dead.
Joseph George Schuengel End of Watch: October 15, 2010 Rank: Sergeant Department: Missouri State Highway Patrol Cause: Helicopter accident Age: 47 Years of Service: 17
Sergeant Schuengel was returning to Spirit of St. Louis Airport after completing an aircraft speed enforcement operation in Jefferson County when his helicopter lost power. To prevent injuries or loss of life to civilians on the ground, Sergeant Schuengel avoided houses and attempted an emergency landing, but the helicopter crashed and he was killed instantly. Sergeant Schuengel had been a Patrol pilot for seven years.


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