Slain deputy memorialized nearly 90 years later

May 13, 2014

It's taken nearly 90 years for a slain Erie County Sheriff's deputy to be properly memorialized.  Monday, Fred Kaesser's name was added to the memorial outside the Sheriff's office downtown.

In July 1925, Deputy Kaesser and his colleagues were searching for three robbery suspects.  The search took them to the Grimesville Inn in Lancaster, where the proprietor of the establishment began shooting.  Kaesser was shot in the abdomen and taken to Buffalo's Emergency Hospital where he died three days later. 

Unfortunately, his heroism was soon forgotten. 

Sheriff Timothy Howard said he was notified by one of his predecessors, Tom Higgins, who noticed a newspaper reference to the shooting and then did some digging to find out more.

"We found no record about it in our office," Howard said.   "We're grateful to Sheriff Higgins.  Had he not noticed it, (Kraesser's sacrifice) would have stayed lost."

Not only was his name added to the Sheriff's memorial, it will be inscribed at a national memorial to slain law enforcement officers in Washington.