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  • CONROE, Texas sgt killed

    http://www.click2houston.com/news/17155381/detail.html



    CONROE, Texas -- An off-duty Conroe police officer was killed in a motorcycle wreck, KPRC Local 2 reported Monday.

    Conroe police said Sgt. Gary Daniel Hardage died after his motorcycle collided with a Jeep Cherokee while he traveled eastbound in the 3200 block of West Davis Street at about 1:30 a.m.

    Investigators said the Cherokee was leaving a fast-food restaurant and Hardage was unable to stop before striking the vehicle.

    Hardage died instantly. Police have not said if he was wearing a helmet.

    The 19-year-old driver of the Cherokee was not seriously injured.

    Hardage was a 15-year veteran with the department. He was assigned to the evening shift patrol division.

    "He was an excellent sergeant -- well respected. He did a good job on the evening shift for us," said Sgt. Bob Berry with the Conroe Police Department. "It certainly is an eye opener, especially for those officers who have motorcycles. It's also a reality check for other officers who now see life comes and goes, and you never know what's going to take place. This is a shock to everybody."

    Hardage leaves behind a wife who is also employed as a dispatcher for Conroe Police Department. He is also survived by three children, parents, brother and sister.

    "It is my understanding that she took the initial call, but had no idea at that time who was involved in the accident. It was just minutes later that she found out," Berry said.

    "This is a tragic loss for our citizens, the Hardage family and the Conroe Police Department. This is the third time this has happened. We are saddened by this loss. We lost a fine officer and the family lost a husband and father. It is just terrible. We ask that the Lord be with the family, the Conroe Police Department and the citizens during this time," Conroe Mayor Webb Melder said. "The men are hurting and I told them, 'We're going to have to grab hands and pull one another through days like this.'"

    Funeral arrangements are pending.

    The cause of the wreck is under investigation.

    This is the second member of the Conroe Police Department to die in an off-duty motorcycle accident in the past eight months. Officer Felton Cranfill was killed when a pickup truck turned into his motorcycle in January.
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