DENVER - District 49 Transportation Director Richard "Gene" Hammond was found shot to death in his car on Valentine's Day.
Police say Hammond, 63, left his home near the intersection of York Street and Bruce Randolph Avenue on the north side of Denver between 3:30 a.m. and 4:00 a.m. to drive to work in El Paso County.
Hammond never arrived at work. He was later found dead in his car less than a half-mile from his house.
D-49 Director of Communications, Matt Meister, tells KRDO NewsChannel 13 his disappearance was an immediate cause for concern.
"We went looking for him. That's not like Gene. (He was) one of the first people here when our buses start firing up and he was always here when his team started arriving," Meister explained.
Meister worked alongside Hammond for five years and saw his passion daily.
"If you met him you instantly loved him. He was just that kind of guy," Meister added. "He just had a caring heart. His heart came into the room before he did. And that's one of the reasons we're missing him so much."
Police are still investigating what happened, hoping for answers for his loved ones. Authorities are urging anyone with information to call Metro Denver Crime Stoppers at 720-913-STOP (7867).