MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A young woman with a big personality made her mark in law enforcement, even though she did not wear a badge.

Janna Wood was a crime prevention specialist and a social media manager for the Shakopee Police Department.

She was just 28 years old when she died from a brain hemorrhage on Sunday.

Her desk is still decorated with pictures of her and her favorite things, like Halloween costumes.

Chief Jeff Tate says she won national awards for her work in social media.

“It’s such a loss for our department, it’s going to be very difficult moving forward,” Chief Tate said.

Janna was the witty and caring voice behind the department’s Twitter account and Facebook page.

“She recognized four years ago that we needed to have a better two-way conversation with the community,” Tate said. “She made sure that we were social on social media.”

Janna Wood and her husband, Erik (credit: The Wood Family)

Janna Wood and her husband, Erik (credit: The Wood Family)

She did it so well that other police departments invited her to train them.

Janna was named Minnesota Crime Prevention Specialist of the Year in 2014 for her work in teaching the community how to be more alert and more helpful to police.

“Rarely would a day or two go by where she wouldn’t come in the office with a new idea, a new way of looking at things,” Tate said. “She was always thinking big picture and how we could do things better.”

Det. Nicki Marquardt sat near Janna at work.

“She taught me that it’s OK to be who I am and be confident about who I am,” Det. Marquardt said. “She taught me to love people and care about people.”

Janna was married to her college sweetheart, Erik Wood.

“She was so selfless, and I saw the love and the strength to care about others,” Wood said. “Through her, I’ve learned so much about giving back to people.”

Wood says his wife really wanted to be a mother, and she came close. She was pregnant with twins last year, but they were stillborn.
Months later, she became pregnant again, but had a miscarriage.

And last week, when Janna was admitted into the hospital, she was three-months pregnant.

“She wanted her babies and she’s up in heaven with them, so she got inadvertently in a more heavenly way, she’s doing what she really wanted,” Wood said.

Janna Wood’s funeral is this Sunday at Bradshaw Celebration of Life Center in Stillwater.

A GoFundMe account has been set up to help her family with medical expenses.

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