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LEBANON, Mo. – A longtime officer with the Lebanon Police Department has died after a battle with COVID-19.

According to a Facebook post, Lebanon Police Officer Kendle Blackburn passed away early Monday morning. Officer Blackburn served as a police officer for more than 16 years.

“We are extremely saddened by the loss of Officer Blackburn,” said Lebanon Mayor Jared Carr. “Kendle was a fantastic police officer and defined what it means to be a public servant. Kendle served every day with the sole purpose of giving back the city that he loved. Our prayers are with Debbie, his children and his parents at this difficult time,” Carr said.

Mayor Carr has ordered all flags in Lebanon to be flown at half-staff in honor of Officer Blackburn.