Man found dead in back of truck near Zahnow

Police work the scene outside Zahnow Elementary in Waterloo. (Corey Saathoff photo)

The Monroe County coroner assisted Waterloo police at about noon on Monday after a man was found deceased in the bed of a school district maintenance truck parked at the northwest side of Zahnow Elementary School, 301 Hamacher Street.

There did not appear to be visible evidence of foul play in the man’s death, police said.

A school district employee notified police of the incident. The man was not employed or affiliated with the school district in any way. Early Monday evening, Monroe County Coroner Vicki Koerber identified the deceased as William R. “Philo” Hale, 42, of Waterloo. Friends of Hale were concerned for his well-being over the weekend, asking for help in locating him via Facebook. For an obituary, click here.

Crime scene tape was put up on Norma Avenue and DePuyt Avenue near the school to secure the scene as an Illinois State Police crime scene unit assisted in the investigation Monday afternoon.

It is typical procedure to call in an ISP crime scene unit when a person is appeared to have suffered an untimely death with no visible indications of how they perished.

Police said there was no danger to students or staff at Zahnow.

The school district sent a voice message to parents from Waterloo school superintendent Brian Charron, who assured them that all students and staff were safe and went about their day as normal.

The alley on the west side of Zahnow was not accessible Monday for student pick-up in the afternoon. Parents were asked to use the circle drive on Hamacher Street. Classes and student drop-off and pick-up took place as normal on Tuesday before the Christmas break.



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