DENVER — On Feb. 11, 1933, two Denver police officers, George Schneider and John Dea, were called to a crowded auction house at 15th and Welton for reports of a man acting erratically.
"They confronted the suspect and he, unexpectedly, pulled a gun and, before Officer Schneider could react, he was shot by the assailant and the assailant then quickly shot Officer Dea, as well," said Mike Hesse, president of the Denver Police Museum. "Officer Dea was able to regain consciousness and fire one shot that ended up killing the assailant. Stopping this from becoming a mass casualty event, they were able to do that, even though they both lost their lives."
Hesse said it was the last time that two Denver police officers were killed during the same violent incident. According to Hesse, both cops had a history of helping people and saving lives.
"They were definitely heroes," Hesse said.
Doug Schneider, Officer Schneider's great-nephew, agreed. He said the heroic way that his great-uncle died is a proud part of his family's history, as is the service revolver that Officer Schneider was carrying the day he was murdered.
"This revolver has quite the storied background," Schneider said while holding up his great-uncle's .45 caliber handgun, which he now plans to donate to the Denver Police Museum.
It's a gun that Doug said serves as a constant reminder of his great-uncle's life and death.
"I would say the Schneider family left behind quite a nice legacy. That's something to think about, to honor," Schneider said.
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