After spending 50 years of his life dedicated to keeping the streets of his community safe, a Tennessee police officer lost his life right after his completing his last shift on the job.
On March 19, 2021, Hamblen County Deputy Stan Shaw went into his office knowing it was his last day at work. He was retiring from his law enforcement career after serving the public for five whole decades. Once his shift came to an end, Shaw left work for the last time to go back home but he never made it. He was later found unresponsive inside his car.
“EMTs were able to get his heart going as he was transported to the hospital. It was determined he had a heart attack. Unfortunately, he was without oxygen for too long, and was placed on life support,” family friend Michael Quinton wrote on a GoFundMe page set up for the family. “After many scans and second opinions it was determined he had no brain function. His wife of 38 years had to make the toughest decision.”
It was decided to pull Shaw off life support, and he passed away on March 22, 2021.
“He believed in second chances. So, if he arrested you, or come in contact with you, or you had been arrested, he was one of the officers who would sit down with you and counsel you,” said the officer’s daughter, Rhea Shaw Grebenik, according to FOX19.
About 10 years before his death, Shaw tried to retire from the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office as a chief deputy, but he soon changed his mind when he realized how much he loved his job.
“He went about a month without working in law enforcement and decided he couldn’t do it. He loved being a cop way too much. Sitting at home wasn’t working and he wanted to help people,” Rhea shared.
Finally, when he decided to retire for good in March, 2021, he had already made plans to spend time with his family. “He was going to go enjoy his wife and dog,” his daughter said, “and fishing with me and my husband and kids and woodworking and stuff.”
Rhea added, “He served his community up until his dying day and I’m proud of him for that.”
Following his death, Michael set up the GoFundMe page for Shaw’s wife to ease the burden of taking care of the funeral and medical expenses, as well as to help her take a break from work during her time of grief, according to People.
TRAGIC. KEEP HIM IN YOUR PRAYERS: An East Tennessee community is mourning after the loss of a beloved law enforcement officer. He was found unresponsive in his vehicle shortly after he left work after retirement. https://t.co/jqmjhswJ7r
— KWTX News 10 (@kwtx) March 27, 2021
My heart goes out to his family as well as his family in Blue 💙
— City girl gone country (@cyndisauter) March 27, 2021
“Stan dedicated 50 years in law enforcement, protecting his community and trying to steer folks onto a better path,” Michael wrote on GoFundMe. “Any funds raised will help support a memorial service as well as his widow as medical bills come in. She will also be taking time away from work to process what has happened.”