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POLICE MEMORIALIZE OFFICER KILLED IN CRASH

Thrown from a motorcycle on his way home, he leaves a wife and two sons in Spring Hill.

The one thing Clermont police Capt. Eric Jensen will always remember about his colleague Robert Sayers is his heavy British accent, which stood out starkly among the rest of the officers on the force.

"It was 'bloody this' and 'bloody that,'" Jensen recalled with a laugh Thursday afternoon. "But you really couldn't have found a nicer guy. He worked hard and loved his wife and two boys."

Sayers, 39, was on his way to his home in Spring Hill about 4:30 p.m. Wednesday when his 2006 Triumph motorcycle crashed into the back of a vehicle that had stopped for a school bus near the Hernando/Sumter County line on State Road 50 and County Road 757.

The Florida Highway Patrol said that Sayers, who was thrown from the bike, was pronounced dead at the scene by Sumter County firefighters.

Christopher Lee, 35, of Tampa, the driver of the 2004 Volkswagen Golf struck by Sayers' motorcycle, received minor injuries.

According to Jensen, Sayers was a native of Great Britain and served as a police officer in southern England before joining the Clermont Police Department in 2007. In July, he was assigned to the department's motorcycle patrol unit.

On Thursday, Clermont police set up a small memorial in front of the police station that included photos as well as Sayers' department-issued motorcycle. Jensen described the mood around the station as somber.

"Everybody liked Robert," Jensen said. "We've lost a good friend and a terrific police officer."

Clermont's police union has established an account at Bank of America to help the Sayers family. Donations to the Robert Sayers Memorial Family Fund may be made at any Bank of America.

Logan Neill can be reached at lneill@sptimes.com or 848-1435.

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