Eduardo Marmolejo and Conrad Gary have been identified as the two Chicago police officers who were struck and killed by a train while pursuing a suspect on foot on Monday evening.
In a statement on Monday, Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said the officers were investigating an area by train tracks at around six in the evening when they were struck and killed by a passing train. He said,
“By doing the most dangerous thing any police officer can do, and that is to chase an individual with a gun, these brave young men were consumed by identifying a potential threat to their community and put the safety of other above their own.”
Marmolejo, 37, had been on the force for two and a half years, per ABC7, and Gary, 31, had been on the force for 18 months.
Here’s what you need to know about the victims:
Both Marmolejo & Gary Were Fathers, & Were Married at the Time of Their Deaths
According to an ABC7 report, Gary was the father to one infant, and Marmolejo was a father of three. Both of them were married, though their partners’ identities have not yet been revealed.
During the press conference on Monday, Johnson said that the train was filled with over 500 passengers, and that it was likely moving at 60-65 MPH when it struck the two officers.
Johnson also noted what a difficult year it’s been for police officers in the 5th District, which has lost two officers to suicide this year, and a third officer who collapsed and died on duty.
He said, “You start to wonder to yourself, ‘How much can they take?’ But I will tell you this, the resolve of Chicago police officers always amazes me. I guarantee you we’re going to have (employee assistance) and chaplains talk to that midnight patrol roll call. But you know what they’re going to do? They’re going to strap up, put their uniforms on and go out there again tonight and keep this city safe.”
Police Have a Person of Interest in Custody, Pertaining to the Chase That Led to the Tragedy
Police have confirmed that they are questioning a person of interest related to the armed chase that led to the death of Marmolejo and Gary, and that a weapon had been recovered, as well, per The Chicago Sun Times.
Marmolejo, who went by the name ‘Eddie Marmo’ on Facebook, and Gary both have already begun to receive Facebook tributes on their walls and in statuses shared by friends.
One Facebook user shared a status that read, “RIP Eddie. My thoughts and prayers are with your family and all of CPD”
Similarly, multiple Facebook users commented on Gary’s profile picture on Facebook, in tribute to the loss.