Captain Robert David Melton, 46, was shot and killed in Tuesday afternoon.
"[Captain Melton's] philosophy was 'lead from the front.' He was an excellent example of the men and women that worked for him," KCK Police Chief Terry Zeigler said in a news conference on Wednesday.
He also said Melton was a professional with an awesome and big personality.
“Big, loveable guy, if I would describe him,” Zeigler said. “Hard exterior, but soft on the inside. Well-respected throughout our organization and the community.”
Melton’s law enforcement career
Melton was a lieutenant at the Wyandotte County Sheriff Department from November 1990 to December 1999. He then entered service with the Kansas City, Kansas, Police Department.
According to the KCK Police Department, Melton was a:
- Member of the Honor Guard from 2009 to 2016
- Field Training Officer from 2004 to 2016
- PPCT Instructor from 2012 to 2015
- Promoted to Sergeant on Nov. 9, 2006
- Promoted to Captain on May 14, 2015
- Currently the Captain in the Bureau of Operations
Melton received 14 commendations, including several certificates of commendation, several letters of appreciation and a Distinguished Service Award in 2007.
Melton’s military service
Melton was a retired member of the Kansas National Guard.
Melton served in the Kansas Army National Guard as an enlisted soldier from December 1986 until he was commissioned as a second lieutenant in August 1997, according to a news release from the Kansas Adjutant General. He retired as a captain in February 2012.
According to the news release, Melton was deployed to Fort Riley as part of Operation Noble Eagle from May 30, 2003 to May 17, 2004. He was also deployed to Iraq from April 4, 2006, to July 4, 2007, and to Afghanistan from Nov. 24, 2010, to Jan. 8, 2012.
“The Kansas National Guard is mourning the loss of Captain Melton today,” said Maj. Gen. Lee Tafanelli, the adjutant general, in a news release. “Captain Melton served his state and nation honorably for over 26 years and for this we are forever grateful. There are many heavy hearts amongst his brothers and sisters in arms following this senseless tragedy. The Kansas National Guard stands ready and willing to assist Captain Melton’s family and the Kansas City Kansas Police Department during what is unquestionably a very difficult time.”
Meton’s military awards include the Bronze Star Medal, Meritorious Service Medal with oak leaf cluster, Army Commendation Medal with three oak leaf clusters, Army Achievement Medal with four oak leaf clusters, Iraqi Campaign Medal with campaign star, Afghanistan Campaign medal with campaign star, NATO Afghanistan Service Medal and Combat Action Badge, according to the news release.
Funeral arrangements for Captain Dave Melton have been set. On Friday, visitation will be held at the Jack Reardon Civic Center, located at 520 Minnesota Avenue in Kansas City, Kansas, from 4-7 p.m. Melton will be laid to rest on July 23. The funeral will be held at Children's Mercy Park at 9 a.m. Parking will be available at the Speedway.
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