The Journal Gazette
Tuesday, July 06, 2021 1:00 am

Memorial to honor sheriff's officer

Sign, ceremony to remember sergeant who died on duty

ASHLEY SLOBODA | The Journal Gazette

A portion of Maplecrest Road will soon honor an Allen County sheriff's sergeant who died four years ago after suffering a medical emergency while on duty.

Diana Cox, his widow, is expected to unveil a sign for the Sgt. Joseph A. Cox Jr. Memorial Parkway at Adams Center and Paulding roads about 3:15 p.m. Wednesday, the Allen County Sheriff's Department said in a news release.

This designation coincides with the anniversary of Cox's first day with the sheriff's department – July 7, 1997. He died almost 20 years later, on Feb. 12, 2017.

The route is an area Cox would regularly travel and patrol, the release said. It stretches from the Allen County Sheriff's Department's training facility to the main intersection nearest Cox's gravesite in Concordia Cemetery Gardens. 

“Sgt. Cox served the Allen County Sheriff's Department with distinction as a patrolman, canine officer, Emergency Services Team member, firearms and vehicle safety instructor, supervisor and led our department's fatal investigation team,” Allen County Sheriff David Gladieux said in a statement.

A ceremony will follow the unveiling at the Allen County Sheriff's Department Training Center, 5080 Adams Center Road. Comments will be offered by Allen County, New Haven and Fort Wayne government officials as well as Cox's father.

Cox, 48, died while on duty after investigating a crash involving a horse and buggy and a car. The driver of the buggy had apparently fallen out of the vehicle, and the horses had taken off, running out of control, when the buggy was hit by the car.

Cox was one of three deputies who arrived to investigate the crash and to bring the horses under control.

Sheriff's department reports stated that after taking the father of one of the people involved in the accident home, Cox put his squad car in reverse, accelerated, crashed through a fence and traveled about 70 yards into a field. Although he received immediate attention, Cox died that evening.

Officials said Cox suffered a medical emergency.

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