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    Let us never forget the sacifices made by others for our freedom and peace.



    Officer Robert Kozminski

    October 10, 1977 - July 8, 2007

    Officer Robert Kozminski was killed in the line of duty after heroically responding to a family's call for help. At 1:40 a.m., on July 8, 2007, Officer Kozminski was one of the first responding officers to the 1200 block of Emerald Avenue NE, on the report of a male walking around inside a residence with a shotgun, threatening to kill his family. Upon arrival, Officer Kozminski went to the rear of the residence to establish a perimeter. Unknown to Officer Kozminski, the suspect was lying in wait in the unattached garage. From that location, the suspect ambushed Officer Kozminski, shooting him in the head with a shotgun round through the glass of a closed garage door. The suspect was taken into custody at the scene. Officer Kozminski died at the hospital of his injuries, leaving one child behind.




    Officer Daniel Duyst

     November 25, 1956 - May 30, 1994

    Officer Daniel Duyst is the only officer to be killed off-duty in Kent County law enforcement history. He died attempting to save a man who was being electrocuted. Officer Duyst was on a family outing at Spring Lake when he saw a man in the water. The man had jumped off a dock that had a light cord running around it. This cord had a short in it, electrifying the metal posts of the dock, as well as the surrounding water. Officer Duyst jumped from the boat he was in with his family and friends to aid the man and was also electrocuted by the current. Officer Duyst left behind a wife and two children. 




    Officer Joseph Taylor 

    Officer Joseph Taylor


    August 2, 1957 - November 17, 1986

    Officer Joseph Taylor was assigned to the Grand Rapids Police Department's Detective Unit in the Burglary Squad. He was called upon with several other officers to assist in searching for a murder suspect. This search led the officers to a home where the suspect was hiding. After gaining permission, Officer Taylor began to search with other officers. This search led him to a bedroom where the suspect was hiding. Ambushed from behind a door, Officer Taylor was shot two times. After shooting at other officers, the suspect gave up and was apprehended. Officer Taylor died, leaving a wife behind. 



    Officer Herman Gloe 

    Officer Herman Gloe 


    August 2, 1942 - December 12, 1974

    Officer Herman R. Gloe responded to a burglary alarm at a business on Pearl Street, NW. When he arrived, he found the front door broken in and entered to check it out. It was then that he confronted the suspect who was armed with a .22 caliber handgun. Several shots were exchanged, with both men hitting their targets. Officer Gloe staggered backwards out of the doorway and collapsed on the sidewalk. A fellow officer arrived as the shots rang out and ordered the suspect to drop the gun. Instead of dropping the gun, he pointed it at the officer, who shot three shots at him. The suspect ran out of the door and fled to Monroe Avenue, where he collapsed from his gunshot wounds. Officer Gloe died from his wounds leaving a wife and three children.




    Officer Wayne Vonk 


    January 27, 1947 - January 19, 1969

    Patrolman Wayne Vonk was eight days shy of his 22nd birthday when suspected store robbers killed him. This gives him the distinction of being the youngest officer killed in Kent County history.

    Officer Vonk was working alone on the west side when a store owner on Stocking Avenue came running from his store saying that he had just been robbed. The store owner pointed out the fleeing vehicle to Officer Vonk, who gave pursuit. The two suspects leapt from the car after a short pursuit, and shot and killed Officer Vonk. After being shot several times, Officer Vonk’s last act was to write the vehicle plate down on his notepad before he died. This act caused a near-immediate capture of the two killers.






    Sergeant Stanley VanTuinen


    May 7, 1931 - December 3, 1966

    Sergeant Stanley VanTuinen, along with other officers, was attempting to arrest a man involved in a shooting at a local bar. After requests by the officers for the man to give up were made in vain, Sergeant VanTuinen was about to enter the home when a shot rang out. Sergeant VanTuinen was killed instantly by a shotgun blast through the door. The suspect fled to the back of the home in an attempt to escape and was shot by officers that were there. Sergeant VanTuinen was married with six children at the time of his death.






    Officer Francis Gallup


    July 24, 1921 - May 13, 1946

    Officer Francis Gallup left behind an eleven-day-old baby girl at the time of his death. A motorcycle officer working a traffic detail, Officer Gallup was struck by a car a McReynolds Avenue and 5th Street NW. His body flew from the motorcycle and struck a second car that was stopping because of the crash. The twenty-four year old officer had been with the department less than a year.



    Officer John Meiboom

    September 12, 1894 - October 10, 1925

    Officer John Meiboom was another officer who gave his life while working as a traffic officer. The thirty-year-old officer was assigned to the motorcycles at what was known as Grand Rapids Police Department's 3rd Precinct Station. After stopping a "speeder" on Godfrey Avenue at Plastic Street, just outside the city, Officer Meiboom was riding back into the city when a truck that veered into his lane as it was passing a bus, struck him. Officer Meiboom died twenty minutes later at St. Marys Hospital. He was married with no children.









    Detective Sam Slater


    Officer George Brandsma

    December 7, 1921

    As the two officers were walking up the sidewalk leading to the door of a suspect's home, shots rang out. The suspects shot Detective Sam Slater through the door. In a valiant effort, Officer George Brandsma rushed the door and forced his way into the home. Detective Slater staggered back to the tipster's home, where he collapsed. Officer Brandsma was shot several times when he entered the home and was killed instantly. Officer Brandsma died leaving behind a wife and five children. Detective Slater was brought to the hospital by responding officers and died two days later. Detective Slater left behind a wife and three children.






    Officer George Geng


    February 27, 1894 - May 17, 1921

    Officer George Geng was the first officer to die in what would be the deadliest year in Kent County law enforcement history. Officer Geng was a motorcycle officer who was attempting to catch up to a speeding vehicle on Plainfield Avenue. A truck driven by a former police ambulance driver turned into his path at Saunders Court. He was taken to the hospital where he died the next day. He was a member of the police department for only two months and left behind a wife and two children when he was killed.



    Officer Charles DeYoung

     August 22, 1898 - June 7, 1920

    Officer Charles DeYoung was a traffic officer, assigned to ride a motorcycle. He was on his way to traffic court to appeal against "eleven violators of the law," when the motorcycle he was riding slammed head-on into a truck. Officer DeYoung was married but had no children at the time of his death.




    Officer Millard F. Davis


     June 28, 1862 - August 25, 1916

    Officer Millard Davis was directing traffic as the intersection of Cherry Street and Diamond Avenue when an automobile struck him. He was taken to (then) Butterworth Hospital where he died the next day. Officer Davis' family status at the time of his death is unknown.





    Officer Henry Slater

    January 10, 1862 - September 4, 1907

    Officer Henry Slater was a rail car crossing officer assigned to Bridge and Canal Streets. Officer Slater was struck by a rail car that had not switched tracks properly. Officer Slater was dragged into the wheels of the rail car where he was trapped. He was instrumental in his own rescue as he directed the men that freed him. After his rescue, he was taken to the hospital where he later died. Officer Slater left behind a wife and six children.




    Detective George Powers

    August 9, 1848 - August 22, 1895

    The first recorded death in Grand Rapids Police history is Detective George Powers. Detective Powers, along with three other detectives, had been sent to the Union Train Depot on Bridge Street to attempt to locate two suspected train robbers. Detective Powers located the men in one of the trains preparing to leave. Detective Powers was shot by one of the suspects when he pulled the train's bell cord to alert the other detectives that the suspects had been found. Detective Powers left behind a wife, but had no children.