Slain deputy's life remembered

Thursday, September 28, 2006

To mark the 10th anniversary of her late husband's death, Christine Castetter Speno will reinstate the Christopher Lee Castetter Memorial Scholarship at Missouri Southern State University in Joplin.

Castetter was shot on Nov. 27, 1996, in the line of duty while serving as a deputy with the Barry County Sheriff's Department. A Purdy man, Cecil Clayton, was later convicted of Castetter's murder and is currently awaiting execution on Missouri's death row.

Christine Castetter-Speno and her husband, Angelo, made the scholarship announcement this week.

Christine was married to Christopher Castetter at the time of his death. She and her family said they hope that the scholarship will pay tribute to Deputy's Castetter's life and service to the community as a law enforcement officer. They do not want it to be a remembrance of his death and the sad days that followed.

This year's scholarship award is made possible by the contributions of Christine and her family and will be offered through the Missouri Southern Criminal Justice Administration Department at Missouri Southern. Deputy Castetter graduated from the MSSU Police Academy, and Christine is a 1999 Missouri Southern graduate.
Katrina Buchholz, a senior criminal justice major currently living in Webb City, is the beneficiary of this year's scholarship. Buchholz plans a career as a United States Postal Inspection Service inspector.

The following criteria has been established for the Christopher Lee Castetter Memorial Scholarship: the recipient must be making progress toward a four-degree in criminal justice at MSSU; they must be at the junior or senior level; they must be enrolled full time (minimum of 12 credit hours) and maintain a grade point average of not less than 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. Scholarship decisions will be made by MSSU's Criminal Justice Administration Department.

Donations to the scholarship fund will be accepted by the Missouri Southern Foundation. For more information, contact Christine at or Curt Betebenner, executive director of the Foundation at
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