David Jacober, a retired Pueblo police officer who inspired many throughout his career, and especially during his courageous battle with cancer, died Tuesday.
He was 55.
Early last year, David Jacober, an 18-year member of the Pueblo Police Department and 10-year Army veteran, was diagnosed with a very aggressive form of stage IV metastatic esophageal cancer.
During his police career, he spent 11 years as a school resource officer at Central High School, endearing himself to thousands of students.
In November, Jacober served as the grand marshal of the annual Veterans Day Parade, a designation he said was “a heck of an honor.”
“It’s a great loss to the Pueblo Police Department and to the community. He served his country. He served the city of Pueblo as a police officer,” said Pueblo Police Chief Troy Davenport.
Davenport said David Jacober, and his wife, Pueblo Police Cpl. Melissa Jacober, inspired the community in how they have dealt with his illness.
“From the beginning of David’s diagnosis to very close to the end, he remained positive and true to his spirit of service and his loyalty to Melissa and the department,” Davenport said.
“He was an all-around great guy and he was well-liked. Dave had a great personality. He was a unique character.”
A funeral is scheduled to be held at 2 p.m. Jan. 16. at Praise Assembly of God, 2000 Troy Ave., with a grave-site service to follow. Davis Mortuary is handling the arrangements.
Jacober’s son, Cameron Jacober, said his father was a fun, goofy and a caring guy.
“He always wanted to be friends with everyone in the room. If you didn’t know him when you walked in the room, you would when you left because he was sure to talk to you,” the son said.
The Pueblo County Sheriff’s Office paid tribute to David Jacober in a tweet.
“We offer our heartfelt condolences to the family, friends and fellow co-workers of retired Pueblo Police Officer David Jacober. Officer Jacober was a good man, a great officer and a true warrior. Your kind spirit will be missed. Rest in peace.”
The Pueblo Chieftain chronicled several aspects of David Jacober’s career. He spent nearly 20 years working as a military policeman in the Army.
He was the subject of the Chieftain’s “Do My Job” series in 2018 and an article on the 2019 charity Ice Cup hockey match that raised funds for his cancer battle. On June 12, the Chieftain captured the moment his favorite hockey team — the St. Louis Blues — won the Stanley Cup.
For about three hours that night, his battle with cancer was on hold.
“I forgot my illness for 60 minutes of hockey clock time. From 6 o’clock, when we turned on the pregame, until now, I don’t even know what cancer is,” he told the Chieftain shortly after his team captured the Stanley Cup with a 4-1 Game 7 victory over the Boston Bruins.
His father, Ron Jacober, was the heralded longtime play-by-play broadcaster for the Blues.
As a youngster growing up in St. Louis, David Jacober would accompany his father to the Blues games, watching the action in the press box from the broadcast booth while his father called the action with Joe Micheletti and Bernie Federko, a member of the NHL Hall of Fame.
“One thing we shared was he turned me into a bigger die-hard Blues fan. More than you could ever imagine. I will miss talking to him about daily hockey news and what’s going on in the world of hockey. I am forever grateful I was able to experience a Stanley Cup with him,” Cameron Jacober said.
Next to his family, and the country and community he served all his life, David Jacober said hockey held a special place in his heart.
In November, when David Jacober’s colleagues at the police department and area first responders took to the Pueblo Ice Arena floor for the Ice Cup, he dropped the ceremonial first puck.
It was the last he was to be on the ice: his home away from home.
David Jacober had been undergoing intensive radiation and chemotherapy treatment since the days following his diagnosis.
Pueblo police officer Brandon Beauvais, who shared a love for hockey with Jacober and organizes the annual Ice Cup, said he will miss him.
“He was a great person and one of the biggest hockey/sports fans in general I’d ever met. He had so much knowledge and great stores to share,” Beauvais recalled.
“He was a warrior and had a heart of champion, which really showed in his fight. He will be greatly admired and missed by everyone who had the privilege of knowing him.”
With tickets purchased by his fellow Pueblo police officers, David Jacober, his wife and son were on hand to watch St. Louis blank Colorado 3-0 on Feb. 16.
During the live television broadcast on Fox Sports, the camera panned to the family as the broadcaster told David Jacober’s story.
“There’s a look at David Jacober,” the announcer began. “The son of longtime St. Louis broadcaster Ron Jacober. David is in a battle right now with cancer. We want to wish him the best. He’s a huge Blues fan. He lives in nearby Pueblo, Colorado, about 100 miles from here.”
“He’s been a policeman there and is an Army veteran. His favorite player of all time? The great Barclay Plager. And we wish David the very best in his battle.”
Throughout his life, David Jacober became more than a hockey spectator, actively participating in recreational league action as well the Ice Cup.
In 2018, he told the Chieftain he knew at a young age that he was destined to work in law enforcement.
“I was always interested in TV shows like ‘Dragnet,’ ‘CHiPs’ and ‘Adam-12,’” he said. “And, my parents raised my brother and I to be good, fair people. I thought, ‘Well you can’t be any more fair than to be a police officer, as long as you do the right thing and do your job right?'”
Chieftain articles featuring David Jacober
‘I don’t even know what cancer is’
Pueblo police work tirelessly to keep city safe