MASSILLON, Ohio – The city of Massillon continues to mourn the loss of one of its finest. Those who knew Massillon Police Department Officer Eric Taylor best, including his best friend on the force, said that they remain devastated three days after Taylor was gunned down, Action News' Dawn Kendrick reported.
Taylor's best friend, Officer Kervin Brown, spoke exclusively to Action News.
"No words can explain how much pain I feel right now," Brown said. "He meant the world to me."
Taylor, 31, was gunned down on Friday night. A single bullet ended his life.
On Monday, Brown had a black ribbon on his badge and the memory of his best friend in his heart. Brown hit the streets trying to deal with his immense pain.
"I just lose it at times," Brown said. "It's hard to function, hard to sleep, hard to think about anything but him."
Brown said that it has been that way since 8 p.m. Friday.
"The call came out and he ran out," Brown said about Taylor. "Eric always wanted to be the first on the scene all the time."
Brown said that his heart sank when he heard the dramatic scanner traffic. Here's part of what he heard:
"We got a guy down! Officer down! Officer down! … We got an officer down!"
"For some reason I just knew he was hit," Brown said.
Part of the reason for Brown's tears of pain is the significance of the scene (pictured, above). Taylor was gunned down near a baseball field where he had been known to hit grounders and was so fast that he got to first base before the pitcher usually even got to the ball. Brown said that memory coupled with the nightmare that he saw on Friday is unbearable.
"No words can explain how much pain I feel right now," he said. "When I got there, I saw him laying face down. I knew he was going to get up because he's tough as nails and he's fast as a bullet, so if someone shot at him, they wouldn't get him.
"I feel so bad because I wasn't there like I always was. I always felt like I had to watch his back because he was always watching mine."