Environmental officer killed on duty honored 100 years later

By WKTV News

(WKTV) - One hundred years after his death, an environmental officer is remembered for the sacrifice he made.

Samuel Taylor was patrolling the banks of the Mohawk River in April 1914, when he came across duck hunters illegally taking songbirds. The 38-year-old was shot and killed when he tried to apprehend them.

On Wednesday, a graveside memorial service took place in Hamilton. Taylor was the first environmental officer to be killed in New York State.

"Even though we're a state agency, we're a small group," said Capt. Thomas Caifa, division of law enforcement for the Department of Environmental Conservation. "We've been around a long time -- longer than most state agencies."

In May, Taylor's name will be added to a memorial wall in Albany for officers killed in the line of duty. For years, the distinction was denied, but the DEC fought hard for the tribute.

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