Yulee, Fla. – The Nassau County Sheriff’s Office, City of Fernandina Beach Police Department and Florida Highway Patrol recognized the law enforcement officers in Nassau County who have fallen in the line of duty at their annual Law Enforcement Memorial Service on Wednesday, May 2, 2018 at 10:00 a.m. The Service was held at the Nassau County Law Enforcement Memorial Plaza in front of the Nassau County Sheriff’s Office, located at 77151 Citizens Circle in Yulee.
“Every day, public safety officers work tirelessly to protect our citizens, enforce our laws, and keep our neighborhoods safe. We owe a profound debt to all those who have worn the badge, and to the families whose care enables them to serve with courage and pride” said Sheriff Bill Leeper. “When the unthinkable happens and officers give their lives or are seriously injured in the line of duty, we have an obligation to give their loved ones the support they deserve” continued Leeper.
The local Memorial Service is one of many that will be held in conjunction with Police Week. These special services recall the selflessness of our law enforcement officers and their families, and honor all those who devote their lives to a stronger, safer community. Peace Officers Memorial Day and Police Week is a time to reflect and appreciate the ultimate sacrifice made by the exceptionally courageous and dedicated men and women of law enforcement who were killed or disabled in the line of duty.
“The service is an opportunity to express our appreciation for the risks law enforcement officers take and the sacrifices they make, and honor the crucial contribution they make to our quality of life” said Fernandina Beach Police Chief Jim Hurley.
“We pay tribute to the law enforcement officers who made the ultimate sacrifice for our community and voice our appreciation for all those who currently serve on the front lines of the battle against crime” stated Florida Highway Patrol Troop-G Commander Major Steve Harris.
Nassau County Sheriff’s Office
Deputy Joseph W. Robinson (End of Watch – May 16, 1891)
Deputy Robinson was the first NCSO Deputy killed in the line of duty. Deputy Robinson attempted to apprehend a violent wanted fugitive in the Fernandina Beach area and was fatally shot by the suspect.
Deputy Jasper N. Higginbotham (End of Watch – July 21, 1895)
Deputy Higginbotham was fatally shot while attempting to apprehend a suspect in Callahan on an outstanding warrant for assault.
Deputy Everett E. Johns (End of Watch – December 6, 1905)
Deputy Johns was dispatched to the south end of Amelia Island to apprehend a suspect for an outstanding arrest warrant for theft. Deputy Johns was ambushed and fatally shot.
Deputy Jeremiah Mattox (End of Watch – March 13, 1954)
Deputy Mattox responded to a residence in Fernandina Beach in reference to a domestic dispute. The male suspect at the residence fatally shot Deputy Mattox as he exited his patrol car.
Chief Baliff Lewis Hailey (End of Watch – September 15, 1992)
Chief Hailey was fatally injured in a vehicle crash on SR-200 between Yulee and Callahan.
Deputy Eric James Oliver (End of Watch – November 22, 2016)
Deputy Oliver was struck and killed by a vehicle as he pursued a fleeing suspect across SR-200 in Yulee.
Fernandina Beach Police Department
Chief James Surrency (End of Watch – December 8, 1930)
Chief Surrency was fatally shot while attempting to arrest a murder suspect in the city of Fernandina Beach.
Florida Highway Patrol
Trooper Charles Parks (End of Watch – February 6, 1973)
Trooper Parks was fatally shot during the apprehension of two armed robbery suspects on I-95.
Hilliard Police Constable
Constable Alfred H. Crews (End of Watch – November 1, 1952)
Constable Crews was killed in a vehicle crash on US-1 between Hilliard and Boulogne.