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Former Salem Sheriff John Agan Dies At 83
Updated May 5, 2013 1:11 AM
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(SALEM) - John A. Agan, a former two-term Washington County Sheriff, has died.

Stephanie Taylor Ferriell, of the Leader Democrat reports, his son, Mike, says his father passed away on Tuesday at his Livonia home. John Agan was 83.

Agan's career in law enforcement spanned more than four decades and included both serving as sheriff and as an Indiana State Police officer.

A Livonia native, Agan graduated from Salem High School in 1947. Two years later, he joined the U.S. Army, returning to Salem after his discharge.

In 1953 he joined the state police, serving initially in the Jasper District, then the old Charlestown District and was eventually assigned to Washington County.
Agan was elected sheriff in 1982 and retired from the ISP the day before he started his duties as sheriff. He oversaw the move from the old jail on South Main Street to the new detention center in 1986 and was instrumental in working through many problems with that facility -some of which contributed to several escapes shortly after the building opened.

After completing two terms as sheriff, Agan spent another four years as an investigator with the sheriff's department. In December 1994, Agan retired.

One of his grandsons, Jordan Agan, was too small to remember his grandfather's life of public service but it had a tremendous impact on him regardless.

"He was a public servant, so that definitely inspired me," Jordan said. "He was just the epitome of a statesmen, an honorable citizen." Jordan is now a student at Indiana University working toward an economics degree. "I want to work in public service, something in government," he said. "He was an inspiration to me in that way. If I could pinpoint someone who led me in that direction, it would be him."

Jordan described his grandfather as "the smartest person I ever knew. He was an inspiration to me in that way." Jordan Agan was named a National Merit Scholarship Finalist his senior year; the first student from Salem to achieve that honor in more than a decade.

In addition to his son, Mike, John Agan is survived by two daughters, Terri and Lori. He has six other grandchildren: John, Joseph and Samuel Kavel, Brooke Agan, and Clayton and Lauryn Smith.

Two brothers, Harold and Jim, also survive.

He was preceded in death by two sisters, Margaret and Jean.

Arrangements are pending at Weathers Funeral Home in Salem.



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