Death Classification: Line of Duty Death
Agency: Chicago Police Department
Served: 10 years, 11 months, 0 days
Unit of Assignment / Detail: 25th District - Fillmore
District of Incident (Present Day): 011 - Harrison
Cause of Death: Gunfire - Enemy
Age at Time of Death: 37
Date of Birth: 19 Jul 1901
Date of Appointment: 31 Dec 1927
Date of Incident: 30 Nov 1938
End of Watch: 30 Nov 1938
Date of Interment: 03 Dec 1938
Cemetery: Oakridge Cemetery - Hillside, Illinois
Grave Location: Unknown
Interment Disposition: Burial
Superintendent’s Honored Star Case: Panel # D-1
Gold Star Families Memorial Wall: Panel # 17
Illinois Police Officers Memorial Wall: Panel # 2, Line 41
National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Wall: Panel # 40-E: 2
Officer Down Memorial Page: Listed
Military Service: No Military Record Found
Incident & Biographic Details
Patrolman Edward James Lynn, Star #132, aged 37 years, was a 10 year, 11 month, 0 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 25th District - Fillmore.
On November 30, 1938, at 8:30 a.m., Officer Lynn and his partner, Patrolman Allen Mulvey, were working the 2nd watch in plain clothes. They were walking by the Blue Goose Café located at 10 South Pulaski Road on their way to breakfast when they were flagged down. The officers were informed by the café’s owner, Thomas Williams that a patron, James Wood had fallen asleep and fell off his stool. Williams then said when he went to help him up he felt what he believed to be a concealed revolver in his pocket. Williams also related that Wood was in the café the night before and caused a disturbance. The officers approached Wood to investigate. Officer Lynn stepped up to another patron sitting next to Wood and announced his office. Lynn began to pat the patron down for weapons. Hearing what was taking place; Wood drew his revolver and began firing at the officers. Witnesses recalled hearing Wood yell “You’re not going to get me,” as he fired his gun. The first shot struck Officer Lynn in the head, but he was able to return fire, firing once, before collapsing to the floor. Woods then ran for cover as Mulvey returned fire emptying his gun at him. Mulvey then ran to Lynn and picked up his revolver, it was at this time that Wood was attempting to reload his gun when Mulvey shot him two more times. Wood was struck six times dying at Bridewell Hospital shortly after the incident. Officer Lynn was taken to Garfield Park Hospital.
After arriving at the hospital it was learned that Officer Lynn’s skull was fractured by the bullet which was lodged against his brain, leaving him no chance for recovery. Officer Lynn succumbed to his wound at 3:25 p.m. the same day.
Officer Lynn's killer was later identified by his fingerprints. On July 31, 1937, he had escaped from the Missouri State Penitentiary in Boonville, Missouri. He was serving a seven-year sentence for assault to kill and attempted robbery. This was his second time escaping from a Missouri prison. A map of “EL” stops was found on his body, which led investigators to surmise that he was also responsible for a recent string of robberies at various stations.
Officer Lynn was waked at a chapel located at 5839 West North Avenue and his funeral mass was held at St. Angela Church located at 1332 North Massasoit Avenue. He was laid to rest on December 3, 1938 in Oakridge Cemetery, 4301 West Roosevelt Road, Hillside, Illinois.
Patrolman Edward James Lynn, born July 19, 1901, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on December 23, 1932. He earned 6 Credible Mentions and 2 Extra Compensations for Meritorious Conduct totaling $420.00 during his career. Officer Lynn was also awarded the Chicago Tribune Police and Fire Hero Award twice. In 1930, He single-handedly stopped a robbery in a Northside restaurant in a shootout with the robbers that left one dead and the other wounded. In 1934, he stopped another robbery after he killed the robber in a gun battle at a Westside drugstore.
Officer Lynn was survived by his fiancée, Helen Mardorf; parents: Nellie (nee Munaher), age 56 and Theodore and sister, Helen Lynn Meehan.