‘He loved what he did’ Hermann community honors fallen officer Mason Griffith

Published: Mar. 18, 2023 at 5:33 AM CDT
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HERMANN, Mo. (KMOV) - It was an evening of solace and quiet as the Hermann community banded together to honor the life of Sgt. Mason Griffith and to show that Hermann has the backs of Griffith’s family.

“Our community is amazing, small towns are kind of like that where everybody pulls together,” said Angela Elder, who attended the vigil.

Griffith was the police chief in Rosebud, along with working at the Hermann Police Department.

He was shot and killed at Casey’s gas station on Sunday in Hermann. Officer Adam Sullentrup was also shot and he is still in the hospital.

Kenneth Lee Simpson has been charged with first-degree murder, assault and and unlawful possession of a firearm, and two counts of armed criminal action. He was arrested Monday.

“Scared and pretty distraught. It doesn’t happen in our small town,” said Elder.

The vigil honored all of law enforcement who put their lives on the line everyday. But especially focused on Griffith.

Hermann’s mayor Bruce Cox says Griffith was a top notch officer, who died doing what he loved, policing his community.

“Here’s a guy that would do anything for anybody. He loved what he did,” said Cox.

“He was just a standup guy and I was proud that I had the privilege to be with him.”

Some in the audience didn’t even know either of the officers but wanted to show that all of Hermann is grieving with the family.

“I think our town really cares about others and we’re helpful with that kind of thing, like this, this is all the town coming together,” said Carter Gerlemann.

Hermann’s Police Chief Marlon Walker also spoke at the vigil.

In an emotional speech Hermann’s Police Chief Marlon Walker said he lost a dear friend. Also telling the audience that it may be easy to be angry right now but urged them to not let evil win.