Michael E. Webster was born in Waco, Texas in 1960. He moved to St. Louis, Missouri at age four and grew up there with his parents and five siblings. He was the second oldest child.
Throughout his school career, Michael was a gifted student. In high school, he was listed in a publication of outstanding students called, “Who’s Who of American High School Students”. He was in gifted programs in school such as Inroads, and he was the President of Central High School’s St. Louis Chapter of the National Honor Society. Michael was also an excellent athlete. In high school, he was a three-time varsity letterman in baseball, and was all conference in soccer. Michael was extremely competitive. He played softball on many competitive teams and even served as an umpire for the community.
He earned a scholarship from the University of Missouri in Columbia for their Minority Engineering Program, but he transferred to Harris Stowe College to pursue his love of playing baseball. Michael wanted to teach math, but he caught the law enforcement bug from his college baseball coach, Don Cooksey, who was also a law enforcer. Michael started working security guard work while attending school. After a short time, the Missouri State Highway Patrol recruited him out of college. He excelled in the MSHP Academy and graduated May 11, 1984.
On May 12, 1984, Michael married Kathey Griggs, his girlfriend of five years. They made their home in Blue Springs, Missouri after Michael was assigned to the MSHP Troop A in Lee’s Summit. They went on to have two children, Alana and Michael Elliott Webster II. Michael has a daughter, Tiffany, from a previous relationship. Tiffany resides in St. Louis where she is a wife and mother.
Michael was a very successful Highway Patrolman. He particularly despised drunks and prided himself on getting drunks off the streets of Missouri. He was ranked in the top two in his zone in drunk driving arrests. He was also recognized by the Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) organization in 1993 for his accomplishments with getting drunk drivers off of the road. Tragically, one of the very people he fought to keep others safe from ended his life. On October 2, 1993, at the young age of 33, Michael lost his life through a drunk driver’s negligence.
Michael’s memory has been publicly honored in multiple ways after his death. In May 1994, Troop A began holding an annual blood drive in Michael’s honor. He was an avid blood donor, so this was a very fitting way to remember him. In 1995, more than ten miles of Interstate Highway 40, where Michael was killed, was named “The Cpl M.E. Webster Memorial Parkway”, after him. This year’s Blood Drive will be held on October 2, 2013. For a more articles on Michael, please read the publications below.
The Ultimate Sacrifice: Cpl. Michael E. Webster — Badge #473
Corporal Michael E. Webster, 33, died October 2, 1993, from injuries he suffered when he was struck by a drunk driver on US-40 in Blue Springs, Missouri, in Jackson County. Corporal Webster was a nine-year veteran of the Patrol. He was survived by his wife, a six-year old daughter, and a 20-month old son.
Corporal Webster had stopped a vehicle at 3:05 a.m. on October 2, for a license violation and was talking with the driver on the shoulder of the highway. A car driven by an intoxicated driver struck the left front fender of Corporal Webster’s patrol car and the left rear of the car he had stopped. The car then hit Corporal Webster who was knocked onto the hood of the eastbound vehicle and carried approximately 200 feet before the vehicle stopped. Corporal Webster was transported to Research Hospital in Kansas City by air ambulance where he died at 7:05 p.m.
The driver of the vehicle that struck Corporal Webster, Nicholas Adams, 21, of Blue Springs, MO, was charged with assault on a law enforcement officer (Class B felony) and driving while intoxicated. In February 1995, after a jury deliberated for three hours, Adams was convicted and sentenced to seven years in prison.
Corporal Webster was the 17th trooper to be killed in the line of duty since 1931.
As part of the Patrol’s 75th Anniversary Celebration, employees of the Patrol have written in-depth articles about each of the officers that have been killed in the line of duty. These stories go more into the officer’s life, who they were and their families, than just the circumstances of their death.
Here is another article on Michael.