Raleigh, TN – Memphis Police Lieutenant Myron Fair was killed on his way home from work early Thursday morning, after a suspected drunk driver crashed into his vehicle.
The fatal collision occurred at approximately 12:30 a.m., as Lt. Fair was driving his 2017 Nissan Altima near the intersection of Yale and Austin Peay, WREG reported.
Suspected drunk driver Marquell Griffin, 50, came flying up behind the lieutenant in his 2015 Dodge Durango, and slammed into the Altima from behind, according to WREG.
The violent impact flipped Lt. Fair’s car, and sent it rolling onto the side of the roadway.
The 25-year veteran-of-the-force died at the scene.
His fellow officers located Griffin lying on the ground outside a nearby gas station, and noted that he reeked of alcohol and had extreme difficulty walking and standing.
He was arrested on charges of vehicular homicide, reckless driving, possession of a controlled substance, and leaving the scene of a crash involving death.
Griffin already has two prior drunk driving convictions on his criminal history.
“Today, the men and women of the Memphis Police Department are heartbroken by the loss of a dear friend, coworker, and an even better man,” the Memphis Police Department said in a press release. “He was a hard-working supervisor who loved his family, his fellow officers, and the city that he served. We are forever indebted for his service and friendship.”
Lt. Fair, a married father of two, was getting ready to retire from his law enforcement career, MPD Director Mike Rallings said, according to WREG.
His wife, Joyce, is a Shelby County Sheriff’s Office deputy, KAIT reported.
“You work for 25 years, you’re almost at the point where you can go home and kick your legs up and then something like this tragically happens to you and your family,” Director Rallings said, according to WREG. “This is a tough time for the Memphis Police Department.”
Lt. Fair’s cousin, Natasha Richey, said that it became clear early on that the lieutenant would grow up to be a public servant, WREG reported.
“That’s the way he was as a child,” Richey said. “He was fun, he was loving, he was active, he was always a helper. We knew it then.”
He previously served as a Shelby County Sheriff’s Office deputy jailer before he joined MPD in 1993, KAIT reported.
The most important things in his life were his family and serving others, Richey told WREG.
In 2004, he was shot in the stomach while trying to serve a warrant at a residence, WHBQ reported.
The gunman fired through a closed door, striking Lt. Fair and grazing a second officer.
The lieutenant said they did not return fire, because the gunman was using a young child as a human shield.
“That’s just one of the traumatic things we went through together as partners, and despite his misfortune then, he still persevered,” MPD Sergeant Therman Richardson told KAIT.
Lt. Fair was awarded the MPD "Service Medal – Combat" for his heroic effort during the encounter, the MPD said in a press release.
Sgt. Richardson said he will remember his partner for his “great big smile,” and for his constant drive to help others and to mentor children.
“The integrity, the morality that he brings to the table is second to none,” the sergeant added.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the wife, two children, mother, family and friends of our fallen brother,” the MPD said in a press release.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Memphis Police Lieutenant Myron Fair, both blood and blue. Thank you for your service.
Rest easy, hero. We’ll hold the line from here.