St. Paul Police Officer Josh Lynaugh, a Stillwater native, died Saturday as the result of a heart attack he suffered after being involved in a foot chase a week prior.
Lynaugh was a 2001 graduate of Stillwater Area High School.
“He was a great kid,” Mike Polehna said, noting that his children grew up with Lynaugh. “He always wanted to be a police officer — following in his father’s footsteps. It’s really a shame.”
Lynaugh played football for the Ponies.
According to KARE 11, Lynaugh and his partner noticed a suspicious person on Feb. 8 while patrolling in the 1100 block of Edgerton Street in St. Paul. When the officers turned their squad around, a teen fled on foot.
Lynaugh reportedly gave chase to the suspect, who was eventually caught and cited for fleeing police and a curfew violation.
According to the Officer Down Memorial Page, Lynaugh became ill following the pursuit. The 30-year-old police officer was transported to a Regions Hospital where he it was discovered he was suffering a medical condition with his heart that required immediate surgery.
Lynaugh underwent the surgery, but died from complications eight days later.
Lynaugh graduated from the St. Paul Police Academy in 2007, received the department’s Life Saving Award twice and had 16 commendations and letters of appreciation in his personnel file, according to the Pioneer Press. He was the son of retired St. Paul police Sgt. Tim Lynaugh.
Funeral arrangements are pending.