Special Agent John H. "Jack" Horst

Special Agent John H. "Jack" Horst

Chicago and Northwestern Railroad Police Department, Railroad Police

End of Watch Monday, April 28, 1975

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John H. "Jack" Horst

Special Agent Jack Horst suffered a fatal heart attack while investigating the theft of a large number of brass couplings from the railroad yards in Clinton, Iowa.

An Illinois State Police trooper had conducted a traffic stop on Route 30, east of Morrison, and discovered the stolen brass after inquiring about the vehicle's heavy load. Special Agent Horst responded to the scene in Whiteside County, Illinois, to inspect the brass and to conduct a follow-up investigation. He was speaking with one of the suspects when he began to show symptoms of a heart attack.

He was transported to a Mercy Hospital in Clinton, Iowa, where he was pronounced dead.

The two brothers who stole the brass were convicted of larceny and sentenced to three years of probation and restitution.

Special Agent Horst was a U.S. Army veteran of WWII and had served in law enforcement for 27 years. He was survived by his wife, son, and four daughters.


  • Age 57
  • Tour 27 years
  • Badge 121
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Heart attack
  • Location Illinois


Most Recent Reflection

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Special Agent Horst, thank you for helping to protect one of America's greatest assets, it's Railroads. Thank you also for your service to this nation during WW2. We honor your memory and sacrifice here.

God Bless you, Brother and may you forever Rest in Peace.

Ptl. Jim Leahy, Jr.
Harvard University Police Department

August 12, 2020

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