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Detroit Police Department dive team member remembers fallen sergeant

Posted: 7:14 PM, Sep 20, 2016
Updated: 2016-09-20 19:14:18-04

People from the community have been stopping by Sergeant Ken Steil’s work home - the Detroit Police 9th Precinct - dropping off flowers all day Tuesday.

Sgt. Steil died in the hospital Saturday, days after he was shot in the line of duty.

Close friends and fellow officers say there is so much they will miss about him.

“He had a silly sense of humor,” said Sgt. David Patterson.  “He never lost his enthusiasm for police work. Every day was like his first day out of the academy. He kinda was a guy who just lived in the moment.”

Sgt. Patterson worked in the 9th precinct with Sgt. Steil and together they were members of DPD’s Dive Team.

In fact, Sgt. Steil taught him how to dive. Together, the two also went to schools teaching kids about what they do.

“One of his gifts was his enthusiasm,” said Sgt. Patterson. He’d talk it up so much you would get excited too. I think that’s how he enticed us all to take it up as a hobby.”

According to Sgt. Patterson, Sgt. Steil was a devoted husband and dad. He often beamed with pride while talking about them.

The two Sergeants spent a lot of time together outside of work. Sgt. Patterson last saw Sgt. Steil in the hospital where he had been recovering. The two naturally, playfully joked with each other.

He told 7 Action News he is still sorting out his buddy’s abrupt death.

“I’m a firm believer that there is a plan and everything happens for a reason and what are we supposed to learn from this and he was killed doing something he loved,” said Sgt Patterson.  “He was struck down for five days and he got to spend quality time with his wife, and everyone who loved him told him so.  I keep saying this was harder for us than it was for him.  He just closed his eyes, believing everything in his life was fixed.”

Loved one are preparing for a final goodbye to Sgt. Steil. His funeral will take place Friday at St. Joan of Arc Catholic Church in St Clair Shores.