Edward Earl Hackert
Appointed April 15, 1918
At 0500 hours (5:00 a.m.) on Tuesday, February 6, 1923, Motorcycle Patrolman Edward Earl Hackert1, Badge No. 243, working out of the Prior Avenue Substation, was killed while passenger in a police “touring car” as he and three other officers left the scene of a traffic accident at the fair grounds at a high rate of speed in the City of Saint Paul. There is some indication that they may have been on another emergency run. A newspaper editorial at the time places some of the blame on the “natural consequence of the policy of letting snow and ice accumulate in ruts in the city of St. Paul.”
Southbound on N. Snelling Avenue, the wheels of their squad were apparently within the electric streetcar tracks but left the tracks near the intersection of W. Minnehaha Avenue. When they attempted to get back into the streetcar tracks the vehicle went out of control and crashed into a building (Hamline Millinery Shop) at the corner of N. Snelling and Van Buren Avenues. The force of the crash knocked the studding out from under the front of the building and a shower of bricks and iron beams rained down onto the squad.
The driver, Police Chauffeur William Fenton Wilson2, and Patrolman Edward Earl Hackert, who was in the front passenger seat, were killed instantly. The two patrolmen in the back seat, Arthur F. Haessig3, Badge No. 223, 281 & 440, and William Kostohryz4, Badge No. 427, who had been picked up earlier from their foot beats to assist at the fair ground traffic accident, were buried in the debris but were rescued two hours later. They suffered minor injuries. Two people sleeping in a second floor apartment, Mr. And Mrs. W.W. Throckmorton, were bruised on the head and shoulders by falling bricks as their bed fell down with the bricks and dust, landing on the squad. There were also others in the building at the time, but they were not hurt.
Born on June 1, 1893, and raised in North Saint Paul, thirty year old Edward Earl Hackert (aka E. Earl Hackert) had been with the Bureau of Police since April 15, 1918 (five years), working most of his years out of the Prior Avenue Substation. He was survived by his wife, Marie, and two children, Earl and Lorraine. His brother, Motorcycle Patrolman Clinton A. Hackert5, went on to become a Saint Paul Police Chief. Patrolman Hackert’s funeral was held on Friday, February 9, 1923, at the Saint Paul Cathedral, and he is buried at Calvary Cemetery, Saint Paul, Minnesota.
1 Edward Earl Hackert was appointed Motorcycle Patrolman April 15, 1918; and was fatally injured in an automobile accident after responding to an emergency run Tuesday, February 6, 1923.
2 William Fenton Wilson was appointed police chauffeur October 14, 1914; and was fatally injured in an automobile accident after responding to an emergency run Tuesday, February 6, 1923.
3 Arthur F. Haessig was appointed Patrolman May 1, 1911; was promoted to Roundsman January 1, 1913; was assigned to Plainclothes Duty December 30, 1913; was reappointed Patrolman June 12, 1915; and retired October 17, 1953. Please note that during that time period there was at least one resignation and reappointment.
4 William F. Kostohryz was appointed Patrolman May 15, 1915; and retired April 1, 1954. Please note that during that time period there was at least one resignation and reappointment.
5 Clinton A. Hackert was appointed Motorcycle Patrolman (temporary) April 30, 1919; was appointed Motorcycle Patrolman (permanent) September 1, 1919; was promoted to Sergeant October 1, 1925; was assigned to the Traffic Bureau October 8, 1926; was assigned to Squad Duty April 1, 1931; was promoted to Lieutenant May 1, 1932; was appointed Chief of Police June 2, 1936; and died July 30, 1943.