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Patrolman James G. Karl | Chicago Police Department, Illinois Chicago Police Department, Illinois


James G. Karl

Chicago Police Department, Illinois

End of Watch: Thursday, August 12, 1943

Bio & Incident Details

Age: 32

Tour: Not available

Badge # Not available

Cause: Fire

Incident Date: 8/11/1943

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Patrolman James Karl succumbed to burns sustained while attempting to rescue the driver of a gasoline truck that had crashed into the Belt Line Viaduct at West 16th Street.

Gasoline leaked from the truck and pooled around a stalled car. When the driver of the car attempted to start it, the gasoline was ignited and caused the gas truck to explode. The driver of the truck and Patrolman Karl, who was attempting to pull him from the truck, both suffered fatal burns. 17 other bystanders also sustained injuries from the explosion.

Patrolman Karl was taken to a local hospital where he died the following day.

Patrolman Karl was survived by his wife, two children, and parents.

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Patrolman Karl,
On today, the 73rd anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice for the citizens Of Chicago. And to your Family and loved ones, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy.


United States Border Patrol
August 12, 2016


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