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Hero Down: DeKalb County Sheriff Andy Clark Killed In Crash

DeKalb County Sheriff Andy Clark devoted 23 years of his life to his law enforcement career.

Osborn, MO – DeKalb County Sheriff Andy Clark died in the line of duty on Wednesday, after he was involved in a two-vehicle crash while responding to help one of his deputies.

The 43-year-old sheriff was traveling southbound on Missouri Route 33 in a Chevrolet pickup when the fatal collision occurred at approximately 11:20 a.m., WDAF reported.

As Sheriff Clark was crossing over eastbound U.S. Highway 36, a GMC SUV crashed into the passenger side of his vehicle, according to KTTN.

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The pickup and the SUV both veered off the roadway.

Sheriff Clark, who was not wearing a seatbelt, was rushed to Mosaic Life Care of Saint Joseph, where he was pronounced dead, KTTN reported.

The driver of the SUV, 71-year-old Robert Carpenter, and his passengers, 70-year-old Susan Carpenter, 17-year-old Lexi Cary, and 17-year-old Kaylee Carpenter, all suffered minor injuries.

They were all wearing their seatbelts at the time of the collision, according to the Missouri Highway Patrol.

Sheriff Clark’s emergency lights were activated at the time of the deadly crash, KMBC reported.

“Every Sheriff throughout the state and their families are grieving for Sheriff Clark and his family,” Lewis County Sheriff David Parrish told the News-Press. “We are frankly at a loss for words as to this tragedy.”

Buchanan County Sheriff Bill Puett said that Sheriff Clark was a good man and an “outstanding” law enforcement officer.

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“He always had a smile on his face and wanted to help anybody,” Sheriff Puett told the News-Press. “I just know everybody’s in shock and he’ll truly be missed. He was a great man and a great servant to the citizens of DeKalb County.”

Sheriff Clark’s law enforcement career began in 1997, when he graduated from the Missouri Western Police Academy, KQTV reported.

He served as a Cameron police officer and DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office (DCSO) deputy in the decades that followed, and took over as the DeKalb County sheriff in 2016.

Hundreds of supporters gathered outside the DeKalb County courthouse on Thursday night for a processional and candlelight vigil, KQTV reported.

“The Men and Women of the Sheriff’s Office want to extend our deepest heartfelt condolences to Sheriff Andy Clark’s family, and the brave men and women of the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office,” the Buchanan County Sheriff’s Office said in a Facebook post. “Please keep Sheriff Clark’s family and the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office in your thoughts and prayers!!”

Sheriff Clark will be laid to rest on June 10, KQTV reported.

Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of DeKalb County Sheriff Andy Clark, both blood and blue. Thank you for your service.

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Rest easy, hero. We’ll hold the line from here.

Holly Matkin - June Fri, 2020

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