Police officer dies 5 years after crash

Monday, September 29th 2008, 11:24 am
By: News 9

By Gan Matthews, NEWS 9

OKLAHOMA CITY - OKLAHOMA CITY -- The flags are at half staff at the Oklahoma City Police Department Monday to honor Sgt. Robert Douglas, who died over the weekend. Douglas had been in a coma for five years.

Robert Douglas began his career as an Oklahoma City police officer in 1985. In 1998 he transferred to the motorcycle unit. That's where his career continued, and that's where, on a July day in 2003, it ended.

Douglas was crossing an intersection, when a car ran a red light and crashed into his motorcycle. He was thrown from his cycle, and then was run over by a pickup. For his wife, the memory of that day remained vivid a year later.

"The doorbell rang, and it was an officer," Alycia Douglas said. "When you work for the department, when you're an officer's wife, that's the one thing you don't want to see at your doorstep."

For Alycia and their young son, Bobby, the news was bad. Extensive brain injuries had left Robert in a coma.

While Robert remained in the hospital, Alycia started a fund in her husband's name, raising money for medical equipment and supplies so she could care for him at home

"We would not be permitted to any brain injury program, so the only other alternative would be a nursing home, and that's not going to happen," Alycia said. "I'm going to take care of him."

Robert came home and Alycia cared for him until his death Sunday night.

"Obviously this is a great loss to the police department," Oklahoma City Police Department Sgt. Gary Knight said. "Robert was a very popular officer here."

Alycia Douglas has said God gave her the strength to care for both her son and her husband, and in so doing she found her purpose in life.

Douglas is survived by his wife and 6-year-old son.

The Funeral for Sgt. Robert Douglas will be held Friday morning at 10:00 AM at St. Luke's United Methodist Church at 222 NW 15 Street. Interment will follow at Arlington Memory Gardens at 3400 N Midwest Blvd.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.