Family, Friends & Fellow Officers Remember...

Investigator Brandon Heath Thacker

Kentucky Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control, Kentucky

End of Watch Thursday, April 16, 1998

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Reflections for Investigator Brandon Heath Thacker

Your absence is felt every second of every day. Your laughter, your sense of humor and ability to make those around you laugh is deeply missed. What I would give right now to hear one of you impersonations, one of your jokes, or simply your laugh. You were the funniest person I have ever known and this world sure does miss and need your humor and your comical view on life. When facing day to day challenges, I try to remember or imagine what you would say....and then I smile and often, I laugh. Thank you for sharing your funny side. Thank you for sharing yourself! I look forward to meeting again so that I can belly laugh like never before!


Even though I never got the pleasure of meeting you, your a true hero in my eyes. For cracking down on DUI offenders. There is no telling how many lifes you have saved by taking them off the road. Best wishes are sent to your wife and children, along with your Law Enforcement agency from all of South Georgia Law Enforcement. God Bless!!

Ptl. Justin Lindsay
Cairo Police Dept., GA


     Today is beautiful!

     It's sunny and slightly cold outside. It kind of reminds me of a crisp autumn day, which in turn reminded me of you.  One thing I loved about Kentucky when I lived there were the clear autumn days.  There is nothing like them any place else.

     Isn't it strange how a certain smell in the air, the slight change in temperature, or the sun warming your face can make you instantly think of someone?  I think the reason why the Fall makes me think of you and Jennie is because I have so many wonderful memories of being with the two of you. I can remember laying about on a Sunday afternoon, with the sliding glass door open to let a cool breeze in, while watching football.  I can also remember taking Duke for walks with the sun filtering through the orange and red leaves on the trees.  And in the background hearing the leaves shuffling as the wind blew.  I can also remember the smell of the apartment.  Jennie used to buy these Glade plug-ins so that whatever room you were in , there was this great floral smell.  Ever since then, I have been looking for the exact plug-in scent for myself.  When I walked into a friends house the other day her apartment had "our scent".  Immediately, I begged her to tell me what the scent was called.  And that very day I went and bought some for my apartment.  Am I insane?  I just wanted something that was apart of you and Jennie surrounding me.  It makes me feel more secure and close to both of you.

     All of these memories happened during the Fall which in turn explains why autumn means so much to me.  The strangest part out of all of this is that I can NOT recall a Fall before or after "Our Precious Fall".

I love you Brandon!


Allison McDanel

I've been to this page atleast four times to leave my reflection of you.  Each time I have tried, my mind becomes filled with emotions which were and continue to be so entense that I can not put on paper.  How am I supposed to explain in simple words the empact you had on me in a way that people would be able to comprehend?  It is impossible!  I have tried, but the words I choose are not worthy enough to describe your dynamic presence that is still very much felt today.  I think that alone speaks for itself.  Love Always, AM


9/9/00 I miss you.  I love you.  Katherine loves you.  She says she can't wait to go to heaven so she can give Daddy a great big hug and kiss.  And she's going to tickle you too, so be ready. I told her she can't go to heaven without me! There are still a lot of tears shed in this house because of your absence.  And it's usually just Katherine and I here.  You were important in my life and it wasn't because you were a law enforcement officer, it was because you were my friend, my dance partner, the other half of my duet, my personal comedian, my teacher, and the person who kept my feet warm at night.  I love you and miss you more with each passing day. 


Brandon, You were a great investigator as well as friend.  You would light up everyone's face when you made your appearance.  Things just aren't the same working without your jokes and laughter. It has been a tough road for us all to carry on without you.  Even though we will meet again someday, you will be greatly missed until that day.



We miss you around here.  Lots of things have changed for the better, and I know that you would be very proud of where we are.  If you were here, you would be a shining star.  I had lunch with Jenny and Katherine the other day, and she looks just like her Daddy.  Both are doing well, and you would be extremely proud of them.  My thoughts and prayers are with them.

Rick Johnstone
Kentucky ABC, ABC Commissioner


There isn't a day that goes by that I don't think about the sacrifice you made.  I will never forget the good times we had working together when we were both with the ABC.  You had to be the most dedicated and motivated professional that I ever had the joy of working with.  I laugh when I think about the times we were undercover in various situations, which always resulted in several arrests.  Probably the thing I miss the most is just talking with you.  It was always great just sitting and drinking coffee with you and talking about life and our wives and children.  You have a good heart Brandon, and I for one could really use you around.  Even after I left the ABC, I enjoyed the fact that we stayed in touch and remained close.

I miss you Brandon, as many others do.  I will continue to think of you each day before I go to work and while I'm there.  Brandon, ask Jesus to keep his eye on all of us, we need his protection.  Take care friend, I'll see ya soon.

D. Louis Mitchell
FBI Miami Division

To the family and friends of Ofc. Brandon Thacker my thoughts and prayers are with you. I worked a DUI case with Brandon, and I must say he was a very good investigator. I have never seen someone so prepared and determined to get a conviction for DUI then he was.Keep your head up and remember that he is in a better place now.

Ofc. Dale Cottongim
Louisville Division of Police

Brandon I want to thank you for having been such a wonderful law enforcement officer, and friend.  It's really not fair that the world has to accept the fact that you are gone and the low life that shot you is allowed to live.  You will always be remembered as the funniest cop I've ever had the opportunity and pleasure to sereve with.  Rest well my brother, you deserve it, and I will see you again someday.

Jeff Abrams
Frankfort Police Dept.

today is 2 years since you stolen from my life.  Sometimes there are sparks of light, like when I look into our daughters eyes and hear her laughter.  But my world will never be as bright as when you were in it.  there will always be a haze in my sky.  I love you so much and hate living life and raising our daughter without you here.  I will never understand why shining stars have to leave so soon, but your brightness will never leave my heart.  I love you, Bran....Always, your loving wife.


I saw your family and your daughter is looking more and more like you - she has the same glint in her eye that you had when you were getting ready for another practical joke.  She moves her hands like you did when you were excited and happy.  I wish you were here to watch her grow up.  You would be proud of both of them. They both miss you very much and talk about you.  I know I will never forget the day you were murdered and neither will those who had the priviledge of knowing you.  Rest well, my friend.



Just wanted to send a little note to tell you that you are always in my thoughts. Keep an eye on us down here, you know how it is at times. Kathryn and I had a chance to see Jennie and Kathrine in December, it was nice. We took Caroline and Kathrine's picture together, wish you could have been there to see them, but I guess you really were there, and I know you were smiling. Take care Brandon, tlk to you later.

Your Friend,


Special Agent D. Louis Mitchell
Federal Bureau of Investigation

It's May 1st 2001...I can hardly believe it. The weather is finally starting to warm up and flowers are starting to bloom. Yesterday I bought flowers to plant for my balcony. I am so proud of myself. I remember how much you loved doing things like that outdoors yourself. Anyways..the Derby is this weekend, I was going to drive down to hang out with Jennie and Katherine but I couldn't. I miss them and I miss you. I just wanted you to know that even after three years I have not forgotten...


Remembering your laughter, your smile and that coy look you had when you were in the midst of a joke, although you rarely cracked a smile. A true comedian. I miss the laughter, the comedy. I miss the happiness and the fun. I miss the dreaming. If only God had made more like you....Your spirit is one that is missed by many. Mostly, I think, by me. You're dreams were my dreams. Our jokes were ours. Your laughter was my music. Your love is my love. Miss you to peices! Love you forever.

Some days you're absence is so much more apparent. Today is one of those days. I have such a hard time coping with the reality that Katherine doesn't get to have you. Five years later and you would think I would come to some sort of acceptance. I guess I have for me. But it's not enough for Katherine. Why does she never get to know the love of her father? Why does she have to see other girls with their dad's and not be a part, not know what it's like? Why does she have to ask me about you instead of learning for herself by knowing you? Why does she have those beautiful and thoughtful eyes that have to look so sad sometimes. She asked to watch video's of you last week. She laughed at your antics, your dancing, your singing and your joking and was so impressed with your bravery riding that crazy ride at King's Island. She knows this world isn't always a safe world. I wish I could assure her that it is. I try. If you were here, she would be assured. Without a doubt. I wish we never had to know the pain of not having you in this world. Please watch over us and protect your precious child. Love you! Always!

Brandon, I just wanted you to know that I'm thinking of you. Missing you. I wish you were here today, I just wish you were here. I'd love to have one minute just to touch you again and to hear your laugh. I was looking through some old stuff the other day and found a note from you. You wrote that you couldn't stand it when we were apart....that I was your best friend....that you would always love me.....that you always want to be with me. I loved the way you would say things. You were nothing less than honest. I sure do miss you. Even after all this time and all these life changes. I can read an old note from you and my heart feels like you just called saying you're just a mile away and you'll be home soon. I guess you are home. It's still hard to accept. I want you at our home. I'm always loving you. I hope you know that when you look down on me and Katherine. She is my greatest love and she is a part of you. She will always know you. She will always know your love for her and me. I promise.

Katherine has decided that lions remind her of you. "Because my Daddy was so brave." She said, "I'm glad that I have a brave Daddy, I just wish he were still here to protect us" I assured her that you were just like the umbrella she carried to keep the rain off of her.
She said, "Everone I know has their daddy, I wish I had mine." OH, how my heart breaks for her. We miss you and love you. We always will.

I never knew Brandon personally, but had the pleasure of working with his brother Sam, a very intelligent and professional investigator. I could never imagine the pain you all have gone through and continue to go through. My thoughts and prayers go out to the Thacker family. I am just sorry I did not express my thoughts sooner. To a fellow Kentuckian, law enforcement officer, and most of all, husband and will be missed.

Brian D. Coyt, Special Agent


During the week of April 16th, you were on my mind quite often. On the morning of 16 April 2003, I was watching the news around 0500 that morning about a police officer killed in an auto accident in Oldham county. Little did I know that it would be another tough day.

On that day my former beat partner and good friends son, Eddie Jr., was killed in the line of duty. Since 1997, four people have been killed in the line of duty that I have known very well.

Not a day goes by that I do not reflect on this. It means a lot to me to have known you and what you represented.


Shon Adams, CPT
Military Police Corps

Katherine told me this week on the way to school that she wished she was older when you died so that she could remember you. I couldn't even hold back my tears as I told her about how you loved her, how you played with her, how you held her close, and that you remember her. I reminded her that you didn't want to leave us and after I dropped her off, I sobbed all the way home. As Katherine gets older and her grief and feelings of loss surface, it intensifies that feeling of what we miss out on, creating memories and living life with you. I'm so angry that Katherine doesn't get to know you. I can take it, I knew you, I loved and laughed with you, and I can live with that and hold on to those memories. But Katherine is a child, she was a baby when you died, it's not right that she doesn't get to have comforting memories of you too.
And I hear this subjective word "forgiveness". How could I possibly forgive that monster who took you away from my baby? Putting aside the pain he's caused me and your parents and family, but I can't put aside what he took away from your baby. Your Sugar Bear. People who don't really understand say she's better off because she has no memory of you. They think she doesn't know what she's missing. Well, I get to see her face when she watches another daddy with his daughter. A look of longing to have a man love her that way. The way only a daddy can. And I have to comfort her when she can't sleep because she's afraid the bad man will get her. And I have to answer those tough questions about WHY? She may not remember you, but she loves you and she misses you and when I tell her stories about you, her eyes sparkle and her smile is huge. We love you and miss you.


I want to thank you for being one of my inspirations to be a police officer as I was growing up. Many years ago, as a teenager, I worked some undercover decoy operations with you and the ABC and it was then that I made the decision to someday be an officer. I have achieved my dream and not a day goes by that I don't think about the ultimate sacrifice you made while doing the job you loved so much. I never got the chance to thank you in person, but will thank you publicly here.

Ofc. J.M.Clark
Louisville Metro Police Dept.

April is a very hard month for the family, as we go toward the 16th. The pain comes back. We try to block you from our minds, but can't. I do thank God for all the memories I have of you growing up, and as a Proud Soldier. We Pray your wife and daughter will know God in the way you knew him. Know that would make you proud. Aunt Edna

The 5 year marker keeps creeping closer and closer and it seems I'm more and more aware if it every single day. I think about what we were doing 5 years ago, unaware that in less than one month you would be leaving this life. Niavely taking advantage of the simple, wonderful love and life we shared. Was this the day when you stood in the kitchen and told me that you thought I was a great mother and that you were so happy I was the mother of your child? You said, "If anything ever happens, I want Katherine to be with you." Was this the day you were laying out your spring landscaping plans to me? Was this the day Katherine was sick and you stayed with her and cared for her all day? Was this the day we talked about making our will and what we wanted for each other if one of us died? You said, "I want you to love again." Was this the day you got that awful stomach virus that made you sick for days and forced me to sleep in the guest room so I wouldn't get sick too. I know these were the days we were getting so excited about UK and eventually watched them win the national championship. They're there again this year and I'm sure you're right behind Tubby Smith watching your team first hand. On this day, nearly 5 years later, I hope you're keeping a watchful eye on me and Katherine. I wish you were her to watch her grow and learn, to read to her and kiss her scraped knee. To pick her up at school and go to the PTS conferences. To take her to the Daddy Daughter dance. I wish it were you teaching her to cook, to ride a bike, to shoot a basketball. I wish and I wish and I wish. And most of all, I miss you and Katherine misses out on you. I love you today and always. Jennie

Brandon, you would be so proud this Valentine's Day to see both your Brothers with "Baby Boys". Know as they grow, they will hear about you, and about the Uncle they weren't privileged to see. You would also be proud of your Cousin Joel as he seeks God will in his life. You & Joel always had a Special Bond. You are gone to a Better Place, but will never be forgotten Here. Love, Aunt Edna


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