Family, Friends & Fellow Officers Remember...

Master Patrolman Richard O. Riggs

Oklahoma City Police Department, Oklahoma

End of Watch Tuesday, January 7, 1986

Leave a Reflection

Reflections for Master Patrolman Richard O. Riggs

At the time of Richard's death I had been working as a
paramedic for 10 years. I spent most of those years working
the downtown area and the NE side of OKC.. Richard and
I became pretty good friends because we worked a lot
calls together. I knew when I got on scene if Richard
was there that my backside would be well covered. This
made my job much easier because I could focus more on
what I needed to do. In turn the patient received better
care and we could clear the scene much faster. Believe me,
the scene could get real crazy at times, especially at night .
I want to say 2 or 3 days prior to Richards death I was walking
out of Presbyterian E.R. to go to my unit and Richard came walking
in. We started talking and I noticed Richard wasn't wearing his vest.
These are the exact words I said to him, I remember this as if it
took place yesterday, so I apologize for the language. I said
Riggs where in the **** is your vest, why don't you have your
vest on? Remember this was just after the holidays, and he said
Mike I gained a few pounds over the holidays and it is somewhat
uncomfortable to wear. I told him he needed to put the dam thing
on or go get one that fits. He said he would think about it and that it
would't take him long to get the weight off. I was Field Supervisor/Paramedic
and was a one man unit at the time. A couple nights later I was in my unit and at about NE 23rd and Eastern. Then over my radio the worse call you ever want to get OFFICER DOWN at NE36th & I-35. Over my career I have had half a dozen of these calls. Its the most dangerous response you will ever have. Its balls to the wall code 3 and you better be on your toes. You have marked and unmarked cars all going 100mph to get to the same place. I was on scene within minutes after receiving the call. I was facing exactly what I was so fearful of just couple of night earlier when I was talking to Richard about not having is vest on. He was in full cardio pulmonary arrest and CPR was started immediately. The first thing you want to do with this type of injury other then CPR, is not waste any time on scene and get moving towards the medical facility. Once you get to the medical facility you can get a lot more aggressive in treating the injury. You have to stop the bleeding if they are going to have a chance of survival. To do that you have to open them up. When I saw Richards chest wound I knew we had to get him to OMH ( Okla. Memorial Hospital was the name of the facility then ) and not waste any time on scene. That is exactly what we did, within 1-2 mins after arriving on scene Richard was on his way to the hospital. His chest wound couldn't have been in a worse place. When you placed your hands on his chest to do chest compressions, the heel of your hand covered the entrance wound. When we arrived at OMH we had an ET Tube in place, IV Lines going and never stopped doing CPR. We all did everything we could do to give Richard a chance for survival, including prayer. I was pretty hard on myself for first couple of months after his death. If only I would of done this or that and got Richard to put is vest on. I believe if Richard had is vest on he would be with us today. We all know what the outcome was and it was a hard pill to swallow, but as always life goes on.
Richard was an outstanding Police Officer and you could tell he loved is job. Better yet and the bottom line is, Richard was really good guy, the type of guy you like to have a couple beers with after work and proud to say he was a friend. I just want to tell Tommy Riggs and the rest of the family their are people like myself who still thinks about Richard after 34 years. In 1990 I moved back to Scottsdale, AZ. which is where I grew up. I'm leaving my email address with the site, so Tommy if you or any of the family have a question you like to ask me feel free.

Mike Crowell

May 7, 2020

Richard oh how we all miss you. The loss and the hurt never seems to go away but Praise God we always have the great memories of you to look back upon. It was on this day 34 years ago today when we lost you. As you know your family misses and loves you. Please watch over us and all your fellow policemen and policewomen.

Tommy Riggs
Brother

January 7, 2020

Master Patrolman Biggs, rest in peace.

Rabbi Lewis S. Davis

May 15, 2019

My brother, My hero. I still miss you just as much as always. I love you.

Tommy Riggs
Brother.

July 16, 2018

Richard was my primary FTO. As a green, unworldly 21 year old, I was probably an irritating kid to Richard. But he taught me. More than he knew. His kindness to others, his integrity, his talent were just a few of the things he shared.

He took his duty seriously. That means when someone hurt others, it was our job to find them. Stop them. Richard taught me to hunt and to not stop until the job was done. In doing so, he taught me to understand the root cause. It wasn't enough to catch the kid burglarizing the elderly, we had to get the pawn shop owner who was promoting the behavior. It wasn't enough to get the mule, we had to take down the dealer too. Every time.

Treating all people with respect, working with teams, don't stop until the goal is achieved, do it right the first time…more than I can name here. I was able to work with Richard for a few years after getting out of the FTO program, but I never stopped learning from him.

I am not a person who gets close to others easily. But I loved Richard. When he was killed, I was filled with anger. I found I could not do the job in the way Richard taught me. My tolerance toward purveyors of violence was tapped and I risked becoming one of them. So I quit a job I loved.

I have had many jobs since. Occasionally I am asked how I learned to do this or achieve that.

I usually just smile and say I read a book once. But the truth is Richard taught me everything I needed to know.

I will never forget you. Thanks for all you did, for me and for others.

Sgt. Mark Meier

January 8, 2017

IN HONORE CASORUM
The promise... Always honored, never forgotten.

Sgt. T. J. Jones.
Greater Cleveland Transit Police Department, Ohio

January 7, 2015

My life forever changed that day! I was in roll call at the North station when Gravels call came across the box. Weird how some things stay with you while other things seem to fade away. This is one of those moments in my life that will stay with me forever. I rode with you the month before I was coming off my days off .....Man the stuff we got into... I ended up walking away from it all never to go back. Never to be a police officer again. My heart was not in it any more! Wow there is pain there after all these years. God bless you man! You wont be forgotten but you have been missed.

Steve Reddy
OCPD

January 21, 2014

Master Patrolman Riggs,
On today, the 28th anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice for the citizens of Oklahoma City. And to your family and loved ones, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy. It took another 14 years but your murderer got the justice that he deserved.

R.I.P.
USBP

Anonymous
United States Border Patrol

January 7, 2014

A night i shall always remember. I was the second unit on the scene . Earlier Richard and I joked after line up at Central Headquaters, hours later he was killed. Words cannot express the pain and the feelings of a friend lossed and seen gunned down. The years have passed, but the memories remain. Rest in peace, my brother in the cause!

Msgt Kim L Burge , retired,OCPD
OCPD Central Hdqtrs

October 14, 2013

Your heroism and service is honored today, the 26th anniversary of your death. Your memory lives and you continue to inspire. Thank you for your service. My cherished son Larry Lasater was a fellow police officer who was murdered in the the line of duty on April 24, 2005 while serving as a Pittsburg, CA police officer.

Time never diminishes respect. Your memory will always be honored and revered. Rest In Peace.

I pray for solace for all those who love and miss you for I know both the pain and pride are forever.

Phyllis Loya
Mom of fallen California Officer Larry Lasater, Pittsburg PD, eow 4/24/05

January 7, 2012

24 years ago today you were murdered. Rest in peace my brother. You will never be forgotton! Watch over all of us!

Officer
OCPD

January 7, 2010

ALTHOUGH I NEVER KNEW YOU, I CAN TELL BY THE DEDICATION YOUR FAMILY HAS TO KEEPING YOUR MEMORY ALIVE THAT YOU WERE A GOOD PERSON TO KNOW. I STILL MEET YOUR BROTHERS EVERY YEAR AT YOUR GRAVE SITE TO DO OUR MEMORIAL FOR YOU, AND WITHOUT FAIL THERE YOUR FAMILY STANDS WITH US TO REMEMBER YOU AND TO THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE. THEY ARE SO FAITHFUL ABOUT BEING THERE THAT THOSE OF US WHO TAKE THE DRIVE OUT EAST EVERY YEAR KNOW TO WAIT A FEW MINUTES, BECAUSE THE FAMILY WILL BE THERE. 23 YEARS BROTHER, AND PEOPLE ARE STILL REMEMBERING YOU IN GOOD WAYS. REST IN PEACE.

JUST A COP
OCPD HONOR GUARD

August 6, 2009

I was very sorry to hear of the passing of your mother, but know that she is home with you now. She was such a strong supporter of the department , and she will be missed at the memorial service. Rest in Peace brother.

Sgt. VanCuren
OCPD

April 22, 2009

I had the pleasure of working with Officer Riggs while training as an Officer on the East side. I remember that he and my FTO where especially professional and great to work with and learn from. We did much as a three-man team, serving warrants and backing each other up. Now, as a military soldier, I have a special place for those who serve and give the ultimate sacrifice for all of us. I'm grateful that I got to know Officer Riggs.

SFC Michael Cron
OMD/Former OCPD

March 12, 2008

"The Badge"

He starts his shift each day
To respond to calls unknown.
He drives a marked patrol car.
A police officer he is known.

He's paid by the citizens' taxes
To make it safe on the streets.
But he usually has a second job
'Cause a waitress has his salary beat.

Now he doesn't know a holiday
'Cause he works all year round.
And when Thanksgiving and Christmas finally arrive
At his home he cannot be found.

He's cursed and assaulted often,
The one whos blood runs blue.
He seldom ever gets a thanks,
To some he's just a fool.

His friends are always other cops
'Cause people just don't understand
That underneath his badge and gun,
He's just another man.

He knows there might not be a tomorrow
In this world of drugs and crime.
And he gets so mad at the court system
'Cause the crooks don't get any time.

And each day when he leaves for work,
He prays to God above.
Please bring me home after my shift
So I can see the ones I love.

But tonight he stops a speeding car,
He's alone down this ole' highway.
It's just a little traffic infraction.
He does it everyday.

Well, he walks up to the driver's window,
And his badge is shining bright.
He asked the guy for a driver's license,
When a shot rang through the night.

Yes, the bullet hit its mark,
Striking the officer in the chest.
But the Department's budget didn't buy
Each officer a bullet-proof vest.

So he lay on the ground bleeding.
His blood wasn't blue - His blood was red.
And briefly he thought of his loved ones
'Cause in a moment the officer was dead.

In the news they told the story
Of how this officer had died.
And some who listened cared less,
But those who loved him cried.

Well, they buried him in uniform
With his badge pinned on his chest.
He even had his revolver,
He died doing his best.

Written By:
David L. Bell
Sergeant
Richland County Sheriff's Department
Columbia, South Carolina
Used with Special Permission of the Author
Copyright © 1999 - All Rights Reserved
and may not be duplicated without permission

Investigator David L Bell
Richland County Sheriff's Dept., Columbia, SC

January 9, 2008

YOU ARE REMEMBERED TODAY AND THANK YOU SIR FOR YOUR SERVICE

VANDENBERGHE
MANCHESTER, NH

January 1, 2008

My name is Thomas Riggs. I am one of Richards' three younger brothers. I would like to take a minute to speak about my brother Richard and what he meant to me. First and foremost he was a very kind and caring person who never had a bad word to say about anyone. Richard was a Christian man who soley belived in God. As a youngster he always wanted to be a police officer and those who knew him were soley convinced that he did his job to perfection. He believed in the system and he died for the people who wanted to make a way in this society. Richard has so much care and love for his family and all his fellow men. On the day I write this reflection is Richard's birthday so I say to him Happy birtday brother for we love and miss you so very very much.

Thomas Riggs
Brother

May 20, 2007

PATROLMAN RIGGS,
YOU PUT YOUR LIFE ON THE LINE, AND IT WAS TAKEN FROM YOU. JUST KNOW THAT YOUR SACRIFICE DID NOT GO UNNOTICED. YOU WILL NOT BE FORGOTTEN. KEEP WATCH FROM BEYOND.

DISPATCHER9520
SAUK COUNTY SHERIFFS DEPT

January 7, 2006

The policeman stood and faced God,
Which must always come to pass.
He hoped his shoes were shining,
Just as brightly as his brass.

"Step forward now, policeman.
How shall I deal with you?
Have you always turned the other cheek?
To my church have you been true?"

The policeman squared his shoulders and said,
"No lord, I guess I ain't,
Because those of us who carry a badge
can't always be a saint."

I've had to work most Sundays,
and at times my talk was rough,
and sometimes I've been violent,
Because the streets are awfully tough.

But I never took a penny,
That wasn't mine to keep
Though I worked a lot of overtime
When the bills got just too steep.

And I never passed a cry for help,
Though at time I shook with fear.
And sometimes, God forgive me,
I've wept unmanly tears.

I know I don't deserve a place
Among the people here.
They never wanted me around
Except to calm their fear.

If you've a place for me here, Lord,
It needn't be so grand.
I never expected or had too much,
But if you don't I'll understand.

There was a silence all around the throne
Where the saints had often trod.
As the policeman waited quietly,
For the judgement of his god.

"Step forward now, policeman,
You've born your burdens well.
Come walk a beat on Heaven's streets,
You've done your time in hell"

GREGG HOUSTON
SOUTH CAROLINA

September 29, 2004

Rest in peace my brother.

Police Officer
Burlington Township PD NJ

May 22, 2004

May god bless you and your family. Your sacrifice will not be forgotten. Rest easy

May 11, 2004

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