Master Patrolman Jefferson Taylor Riverside Police Division, Missouri EoW: Friday, June 3, 2011


Master Patrolman
Jefferson Taylor

Riverside Police Division, Missouri
End of Watch: Friday, June 3, 2011

Biographical Info

Age: 31
Tour of Duty: 6 years
Badge Number: Not available

Incident Details

Cause of Death: Weather/Natural disaster
Date of Incident: May 23, 2011
Weapon Used: Not available
Suspect Info: Not available

Agency Contact Information

Riverside Police Division
2990 NW Vivion Road
Riverside, MO 64150
Phone: (816) 741-1191

Master Patrolman Jeff Taylor succumbed to injuries sustained on May 23, 2011, while assisting with tornado disaster response efforts in Joplin, Missouri.
Patrolman Taylor had just returned to a command post on a department ATV to drop off another first responder when a bolt of lightning struck next to where he was standing. Other public safety officers on the scene immediately began CPR and stabilized him for transport to the hospital.
He was transferred to St. John’s Hospital in Springfield, Missouri, where he remained until succumbing to his injuries on June 3, 2011.
Patrolman Taylor had served with the Riverside Police Division for six years and had previously served with the Webb City Police Department and Platte County Sheriff’s Office.

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — Officer Jefferson “Jeff” Taylor, who was struck by lightning on Monday, May 23, while on tornado disaster response duty in Joplin, passed away at a hospital here on Friday. He was 31 years old.  He worked for Riverside, a suburb on the north side of Kansas City.

“Jeff Taylor volunteered to assist with the Joplin disaster recovery,” said Greg Mills, Chief of Police and Director of Public Safety for the City of Riverside. “He was a highly dedicated officer and a devoted public servant, and we will always remember his sacrifice.”

Officer Taylor is the first officer in the history of Riverside Police Department to die in the line of duty, and the first emergency disaster responder to pass away as a result of the tornado in Joplin on May 22.

Taylor was part of Riverside’s 12-member contingent of police officers, firefighters and public works staff members who responded to the Joplin tornado disaster.  On the evening after the tornado, as a new line of storms moved through the Joplin area, Taylor had just returned to a command post when lightning struck the ground near where he was working.

Public Safety workers on the scene performed CPR and stabilized him for further treatment.  He underwent successful skin graft surgery and was being treated for other complications when he died.  Family members were at his side when he died at 9:25 a.m. on Friday.

“We are heartbroken,” Chief Mills said.  “Our department, our community and law enforcement as a whole have lost a dedicated professional doing what he did best – helping those who were in need. The fragility of life gives way to the enduring spirit Jeff showed to us all.  Our department will never be the same.”

“We are saddened by the loss of our officer and loyal public servant.  He died upholding a tradition of our community and many communities like ours to serve and protect, and to help neighbors in need.  Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends," said Riverside Mayhor Kathy Rose.

Taylor joined the Riverside Police Department in 2005 and held the rank of Master Patrolman at the time of his death.  He was named Officer of the Year in 2008.

Many in the community knew Taylor from his work with the department’s K-9 Unit from 2007 through 2010.  He previously was an officer with the Webb City Police Department.

Information about survivors and services will be announced as soon as details are finalized.

Cards and messages are welcome:

Taylor Family
City of Riverside Police Department
2990 NW Vivion Road
Riverside, MO 64150.

In addition, an account has been established in honor of Officer Taylor to assist his family with expenses:

Taylor Benefit Account
K.C. Police Credit Union
2800 East 14th Street
Kansas City, MO 64127


1 Response to “Master Patrolman Jefferson Taylor Riverside Police Division, Missouri EoW: Friday, June 3, 2011”

  1. 1 David Schantz June 4, 2011 at 14:04

    Friends and family of Jefferson Taylor will be in my thoughts and prayers. Rest In Peace Master Patrolman Jefferson Taylor.

    God Bless America, God Save The Republic.

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