January 29, 2023

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Florida officer killed in motorcycle crash laid to rest

Corrections Captain Mark Elam, an 18-year employee with the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office, was killed in a crash Thursday while riding his motorcycle to work.

SAN MATEO, Fla. — (Note: The video above was first published April 8.)

A Putnam County Sheriff’s Office corrections officer who died in a motorcycle crash last week has been laid to rest.

Corrections Captain Mark Elam, an 18-year employee with the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office, was riding his motorcycle to work on Thursday when he collided with a van in the San Mateo area, the sheriff’s office said.

A celebration of Elam’s life took place Monday at 4 p.m. at Conventry Oaks Farm in Palatka. As a U.S. Marine Corps veteran, the USMC and the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office rendered military honors.

A motorcade procession escorted Elam to the funeral, including officers from Palatka Police Department, Clay County Sheriff’s Office, St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office, Florida Highway Patrol and St. Augustine Beach Police Department.

Elam served in the Putnam County Jail for 18 years, after serving four years in the United States Marine Corps, the sheriff’s office said. He is survived by his wife and two sons, and he and his wife were in the process of adopting a sibling group of five children, according to the sheriff’s office.

Elam was posthumously promoted to the rank of captain, which he was due to receive in May. He served as a member of the Sheriff’s Office dive team, was a member of the Hastings Masonic Lodge, enjoyed woodworking, target practice and taking rides on his motorcycle, according to his obituary.

RELATED: Putnam County corrections officer killed in motorcycle crash on way to work, sheriff’s office says

According to an FHP report, a blue Harley Davidson Electra Glide was traveling northbound on US-17 in the left lane. Troopers say around the same time, a white Ford Transit Van was stopped at the stop sign eastbound on N Boundary Road and then attempted to cross over the northbound lanes of US-17 to access the southbound lanes.

The Harley Davidson struck the Ford Transit Van on the left front and the rider was ejected from the motorcycle, says FHP.

He was not wearing a helmet, according to the report.

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