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SWAT Officer Collapses, Dies After Grueling Training Exercise

SWAT Officer Collapses, Dies After Grueling Training Exercise

Associated Press | San Francisco Chronicle

August 01, 2011

BUENA PARK, CA – Daniel Ackerman had just completed a grueling physical fitness test required for all Buena Park Police SWAT officers when he became disoriented and stared off into space.

An on-site doctor noticed something was wrong and by 8:15 a.m. on Friday, Ackerman was in a squad car heading toward the hospital. The next morning, the 31-year-old was dead.

The Irvine resident had no preexisting medical condition and appeared to be in his prime, according to his sister.

“He’s the healthiest person in the family,” said Christie Thompson, 19. “He works out every day, he eats healthy. He had a check-up not long ago and all his medical tests came back fine. It’s shocking and heartbreaking.”

Ackerman, who grew up in Buena Park and attended Kennedy High School in La Palma, had long dreamed of becoming a police officer and joined the police Explorers at age 14. He became a reserve officer in April 2001 and was hired full-time four years later, said Buena Park Cpl. Andy Luong.

Recently selected for SWAT, Ackerman seemed fine at the start of the required semiannual strength and endurance test at Fullerton’s water tower facility. Ackerman completed the course, which includes running and jumping over walls and fences, within the required time, but then seemed to zone out, Luong said.

When family members first arrived at St. Jude Medical Center in Fullerton, Ackerman was conscious and responsive. He greeted his daughter Avery, who had turned 2 years old that day. The tube down his throat prevented him from talking, but he waved as if everything was all right.

“You could ask him questions and he’d nod and could squeeze your hand to say yes or no,” Thompson said. “He started showing improvement and then he went downhill. They found internal bleeding and his veins started collapsing. It just happened so fast.”

Ackerman passed away Saturday about 3:40 a.m. In addition to his sister and daughter, he is survived by his mother, Cindy, of Cypress and his girlfriend, Sharitie Harper of Midway City. The family was awaiting results of the autopsy and had yet to set a funeral date.

Thompson said she takes comfort in the fact that her brother had achieved much of what he set out to do. “He wanted to become a part of SWAT, so we can honestly say he died content,” she said. “I just wish he would have gotten more of a chance to experience his goal.”


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  • Las_vegas_2011_074_max50

    Steven82

    almost 2 years ago

    6 Comments

    I thank you for your service in the community sir! May you rest in peace. God bless you

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Anonymous

    over 2 years ago

    Rest in peace brother, God Bless You

  • In_remembrance_of_oakland_pd_max50_max50_max50_max50_max50

    rhood

    over 2 years ago

    23592 Comments

    Rest In Peace Officer Ackerman.

  • Idf_soldier_and_kittyimage2_max50

    amramhakohen

    over 2 years ago

    206 Comments

    I'm so sorry to hear that a LEO goes down, esp. like this! I'd like to know if it was particularly hot that day; what the training officer was doing; etc.

  • 101227-120643_max50

    2386

    over 2 years ago

    248 Comments

    REST IN PEACE

  • Me_max50

    denise65

    over 2 years ago

    2676 Comments

    Officer Ackerman, Rest in peace. I'm sure God has something wonderful planned for you. Thank you for serving and having the courage to be the best you can be. I'm sure your family is very proud of you.

    To this brave Officer's family, friends, and the community in which he served, my thoughts and prayers are with you all during this tragic time. God bless you all and comfort you.

  • Avatar_sacredheart-_my_beliefenet_photo_6-8-08_max50

    MaxFdaAtf1

    over 2 years ago

    32 Comments

    God Bless
    Sincerely,
    ~Theresa~
    * * ITAly * *

  • Headshot_max50

    HeadShot

    over 2 years ago

    736 Comments

    One SWAT brother to another, rest in peace Good Sir. Keep watch over your team.

  • Marvin_max50

    lajustice

    over 2 years ago

    1178 Comments

    GOD bless you and keep you brother

  • Thi_seal_max50

    mpd_943

    over 2 years ago

    2486 Comments

    Rest in Peace Brother, We have the Watch!

  • 000000000000000aaaaaaaaaa_max50

    Mrbdguard

    over 2 years ago

    4548 Comments

    We will remember, Thank you for the price you were willing to pay. Peace and may the hand of God be on all those who loved you and were loved by you.

  • Work_max50

    Mr_Nothumbs

    over 2 years ago

    250 Comments

    Rest in Peace Brother!

  • Erin_1_max50

    ESederquist

    over 2 years ago

    170 Comments

    Rest in Peace Officer Daniel Ackerman.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Anonymous

    over 2 years ago

    RIP Daniel

  • Me_max600_max50

    patrickT

    over 2 years ago

    324 Comments

    I still don't understand what happened to him.

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