Maryland Heights Police Department
Maryland Heights, MO
Joseph Eagan comes from a family of Police Officers; including his brothers-in law and his daughter who is currently in the Police Academy. He is presently a Sergeant with the Bureau of Investigation and a Deputy Commander for the St. Louis Area Major Case Squad.
Joseph Eagan has been a Police Officer for a total of 27 years and has worked in patrol investigations and in undercover narcotics units.
It was Saturday morning at about 2 a.m. in December 2010, when Joseph Eagan was conducting undercover surveillance as part of a multi-jurisdictional investigation.
The sergeant was ambushed in his un-marked vehicle by three carjackers.
When the car-jackers realized that Joseph Eagan was an undercover officer; one of the assailants shot a bullet through an open car door, hitting him in the face.
The three suspects fled into the night while Joseph sat bleeding in his car, fighting for his life.
His jaw was completely shattered and he was losing a lot of blood; according to his family and friends, they did not think he would survive. "He missed death by inches...," Says his fellow law enforcement officer Robert Cutt.
Joseph Eagan survived the incident and the reconstructive surgeries that followed; although he was nearly killed in the line of duty, he went to work immediately after leaving the hospital.
While the attack was a stark reminder of how dangerous police work can be, it wasn't enough to dissuade his daughter from emulating the powerful example set by her father. She's not the only one that sees her father as a hero; Sergeant Eagan has earned five Chief's Letters of Commendation, a meritorious award and an Award of Excellence from the Major Case Squad.
Each year he spends 250 to 300 hours organizing trivia fundraisers for local charities and helps to coordinate the annual "Polar Bear Plunge" to raise money for the Special Olympics.
Sergeant Joseph Eagan has been a major driving force behind the Maryland Heights Police Officers Association's annual Christmas event at Ranken Jordan Pediatric Specialty Hospital. The Sergeant is passionate about helping the young people in his community; according to his Superior, Joseph was at the hospital handing out toys the very morning that he was shot in the face.