For The Tribune
Earl Taggart spent nearly 40 years in law enforcement as a state police trooper and as Jennings County sheriff.
He has tried to capture his memories, feelings and emotions of those years in 135 pages.
His book, “The Cop That Cared: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly,” is a collection of short stories. It was published in June by Amazon and has exceeded 1,000 copies sold.
Taggart, who wrote the book in his spare time during three years, will sign copies at the Jackson County Sheriff’s Department booth at the county fair, which begins Sunday and continues through Aug. 1.
“My family and friends encouraged me to put some of my stories down on paper,” Taggart said. “Some of the stories are funny, and some of them are sad, but they are all true, and I tried to tell them through the emotions I felt when they happened.”
Most of the stories are about events in his eight years as sheriff, from 1999 to 2007, and the preceding 29 years as an Indiana State Police trooper based at the post in Seymour. The book also includes a few stories from other times of his life, such as serving on the Jennings County School Board and as a football coach and being a family man.
“I just write from the heart about common folks and heroes I have met in my life,” he said.
He recalled a mother in a car accident with her baby and just worrying about someone helping the child, he said.
“When I got to her, she was holding her baby, and she was dying, and all she was worried about was someone helping her baby. She did die, and to me, she died a hero because in the end, all she cared about was saving her baby,” Taggart said.
Taggart, 68, moved to Jennings County in 1970. He and his wife, Janie, live on a small farm in Queensville, where they raise cattle and dogs. They have six adult children, eight grandchildren and one great-grandchild.
[sc:pullout-title pullout-title=”If you go” ][sc:pullout-text-begin]
What: Public book signing of “The Cop That Cared: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly,” written by former Jennings County Sheriff Earl Taggart
When: 5 to 10 p.m. Sunday through Aug. 1
Where: The Jackson County Sheriff’s Department booth at the Jackson County Fairgrounds in Brownstown
How: You can bring an already purchased book to be signed or purchase a copy for $10
Copies are also for sale at the following locations:
- Hoosier Street Grill, 161 Fifth St., North Vernon
- Garlitch Ford, 2795 State Road 7, North Vernon
- Phoenix Guns, 806 Second St., Columbus