30-year JSO veteran dies in car crash

ALACHUA COUNTY, Fla. --- The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office is mourning the loss of one of their own: Officer Mike Pickering. The 52-year-old Clay County man was a 30-year veteran of JSO.

According to the Florida State Highway Patrol, Pickering died Tuesday when he was hit by an SUV on State Road 26 in Alachua County. James Means, 73, allegedly turned left at a stop sign and hit the pick-up truck that Pickering was driving. Pickering's 10 year-old daughter was also in the truck. Both were transported to UF Shands, where Pickering was pronounced dead. His daughter is expected to survive.

Troopers are not sure if Pickering was wearing a seat belt, but they say his 10-year-old daughter was strapped in.

JSO released a statement writing, 'His family remains in our prayers." Pickering retired from JSO in 2013.

Mike's wife, Diane, released a statement. "He was more than a great husband. He was a great Dad, son, brother, grandfather, friend….and an awesome police officer. Michael loved his family, his Gators and loved his motorcycle."

In January 2012, First Coast News sat down with Pickering after he suffered a heart attack on a robbery chase. After the attack, he worked with Doctors at UF Shands, to teach proper CPR.

Mike leaves behind his wife Diane Denemark Pickering and his children, Kerri, Aleece and Robbie Pickering.

Service Arrangements for Michael Pickering:

- Viewing: Friday, March 7th from 4PM - 8 PM at Jones Gallagher Funeral Home at 340 E Walker Drive, Keystone Heights

- Funeral: Saturday, March 8th at 10 AM at Saint Williams Catholic Church at 210 SW Peach Street, Keystone Heights


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