Hopkinsville lost one of its oldest retired city police officers Tuesday when former captain James “Smokey” Taylor passed away at his home of over four decades on Thomas Street at the age of 81.
Taylor served 20 years with the city police department and retired as captain in 1981.
He trained many officers during his tenure, including former city mayor and current magistrate Rich Liebe.
Captain Taylor was also among those who responded to a Hopkinsville night club on July 20th, 1971 when off-duty officer Amos Faulkner, Jr. was shot to death.
He once recounted a story to his nephew, WHOP News Director Adam May, of a time he responded to an armed man causing a disturbance at a restaurant. Restraint by Captain Taylor and another officer and the assistance of a bystander likely saved lives that day.
Taylor retired a second time after many years working security at Jennie Stuart Medical Center and retired permanently several years ago after working a few years as a security guard at U.S. Smokeless Tobacco.