Bay City News Service
Flags are flying at half-staff across the state in honor of a California Highway Patrol officer who died Wednesday after he was shot Tuesday morning during a routine traffic stop on Interstate Highway 680 in Alamo.
Capitol flags will be flow at half-staff, Gov. Jerry Brown's office announced.
Kenyon Youngstrom was shot in the head around 8:30 a.m. Tuesday while talking with the driver of a green Jeep Wrangler his partner had pulled over on southbound I-680 north of Livorna Road.
The Jeep's driver, Christopher Boone Lacy, 36, of Corning, Tehama County, shot Youngstrom without warning after a brief conversation on the side of the highway, Contra Costa County sheriff's spokesman Jimmy Lee said.
A second officer shot Lacy after Youngstrom was struck. Both Youngstrom and Lacy were taken to John Muir Medical Center, Walnut Creek, where Lacy died that day.
Youngstrom's family and colleagues rushed to be with the wounded officer at the hospital.
The seven-year CHP veteran was assigned to the agency's Contra Costa office in Martinez in February 2006 after graduating from the CHP Academy in August 2005.
He was then transferred to the Golden Gate Division headquarters in January 2009 before returning to a post in Contra Costa County on Aug. 1.
Youngstrom had served in the U.S. Army Reserve from 1994 to 2000 and had reached the rank of specialist.
He is survived by his wife Karen, two sons and two daughters, and his parents, Gaylord and Jill Youngstrom, of Riverside. He also had four brothers and a sister.
Youngstrom had prearranged to have his organs donated, and his wishes are being carried out, CHP officials said.
A statement released by the CHP describes Youngstrom as a "man of God" and states that he "radiated joy and genuine care for all around him." His family has asked for privacy as they grieve together, and "learn how to face tomorrow without Kenyon," CHP officials said.
CHP Commissioner Joe Farrow released a statement shortly after learning about Youngstrom's death, saying that Youngstrom would be honored by having his name engraved on the CHP Memorial Fountain in Sacramento.
"This is a very sad day for the CHP as well as all Californians," Farrow said. "Officer Youngstrom was a valued member of the CHP family." Youngstrom is the 223rd CHP officer to be killed in the line of duty since 1929.
Gov. Jerry Brown expressed his condolences on behalf of Californians. "Officer Youngstrom died protecting the community he served, and we are grateful to him for that," the governor said.
Plans are being made for a public memorial in the near future, CHP Officer John Fransen said.
The shooter, Lacy, who graduated from San Francisco State University's computer science master's program in 2005, was a computer engineer.
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