“Working the night shift in tough South Central Los Angeles, former Saginaw Township resident Edward E. Reed Jr. never complained of his duties, colleagues say.
“This guy followed everything I told him to do,” said Sgt. William J. Thomson of the Metropolitan Transit Authority Police Department.
“This kid just loved being a cop, loved doing his job.”
Transit Police Officer Reed was fatally injured and fellow officer Eric Waterman was seriously injured in an on-duty early morning traffic accident involving an alleged drunk driver on Sunday, Feb. 21, 1993.
Reed was killed when a car ran a red light, broadsiding the patrol car and causing it to slam into a pole. The man abandoned his car, then fled the scene before being apprehended at his residence after an intensive search was conducted with the help of the Los Angeles Police Department.
The suspect pled guilty to manslaughter charges in Dept. 112 of the Superior Court of Los Angeles County on March 22, 1993. He was sentenced to seven years in state prison.
Reed was the first officer killed in the line of duty in the 14-year history of the Transit Authority police force, which is separate from tile Los Angeles Police Department.
The injured officer Waterman, 25, a member of the force since May 1990, was admitted to USC Medical Center for treatment of a fractured vertebrae.
Reed, assigned to early morning patrol, was an avid runner who served in the U.S. Army as a MP. He was born in New Jersey and lived in Washington State before joining tile Transit Police in December 1991. He was single, but had recently announced his engagement to Jeanette Starr and planned to be married Sept. 10.
“We all felt good when you called for a back-up. You knew he (Reed) was on his way,” said Ofc. Sheryl Peterson who had worked with Reed on the same watch.
“He was the type of cop you’d want on your squad,” said Sgt. Mo Angel, adding that “he (Reed) never complained, he just went out and did his job. You could count on him.”
Reed will be missed and remembered by his fellow Transit police officers for his contribution and dedication to the department.
He is survived by his parents, Ed and Betty Reed, of Puyallup, WA, sisters Alice and Kathy, and fiancee, Jeanette Starr.
Donations can be made in Ofc. Reed’s name to the California Peace Officers’ Memorial Fund, 1911 F Street, Sacramento, CA 95814.