Second-class citizenry

Missouri Highway Patrol Cpl. Dennis Engelhard was hit by a vehicle that lost control in the snow on Christmas day. His partner will not see anything from the state.

Under the rules of the state pension system that covers the Missouri Highway Patrol and Department of Transportation workers, if a trooper dies in the line of duty, his or her spouse is eligible for lifetime survivor benefits.

The yearly benefit is equal to half of the officer’s average salary during the officer’s highest-paid three years as a trooper. For Engelhard, the benefit would have been $28,138 a year.

Engelhard’s partner, Kelly Glossip, was at the hospital when Engelhard was pronounced dead. He mourned with the other troopers – just as they would have mourned for their own wives. The difference is that Missouri condones bigotry, so Glossip will not see any of that pension.

“I’d take 100 Dennis Engelhards. He was an outstanding trooper,” said Capt. Ronald Johnson, head of the Highway Patrol troop that covers St. Louis and surrounding counties. “His lifestyle had no bearing on his career.”

2 Responses

  1. “The law would apply the same to a straight trooper with a boyfriend or girlfriend, said state Rep. Ward Franz, R-West Plains, chairman of the Joint Committee on Public Employee Retirement.”

    It would seem there is equal treatment there.

  2. However there is a difference; the straight couple could have gotten married if they had chose to do so; under admendment 2 we didn’t have that option. Not trying to show any disrespect; simply pointing out an obvious difference.

    So Dennis is shown gratitude for giving his life while he was working for the state of Missouri by leaving his entire debt onto his life partner. It just doesn’t seem like the state appreciated his life. This simply makes me sad; because he loved his job and loved helping others. Yet to show their gratitude for his life; the person that Dennis loved more than anyone (and yes I have the documentation to prove it, he kept a journal in his handwriting) he often states that I was his one and only and the person of his dreams. I’m thankful for Dennis giving his life for the safety of others, for that I will pay off his debt on my own. Because I unconditionally loved him and that is what love is.–May the Peace of the Lord be always with you and your family.

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