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Friends, family miss Kitterle's wit

Sean Smith, Correspondent
Article Created: 08/20/2008 08:44:32 PM PDT

RIALTO - A friendly debate about athleticism once prompted Police Cpl. Kurt Kitterle to challenge his fellow SWAT members to a footrace, which he not only lost, but also took a quite a fall just before reaching the finish line.

Despite the tumble, Kitterle could not have cared less.

"(Kitterle) was always up for a challenge," said Lt. Randy De Anda of the Rialto Police Department, who served on the SWAT team with Kitterle. "He had such a great sense of humor. Losing didn't seem to bother him at all."
The witty personality and unselfishness that made Kitterle so well-liked by those who knew him will be missed. Kitterle died Friday after a year and a half battle with brain cancer.

He was 50.

Kitterle was born in New Jersey but moved to Southern California with his family at a young age.

After graduating high school, Kitterle joined the Army and became a military police officer. He spent four years in the service and received commendations for heroic action and exemplary service.
Kitterle began his career in law enforcement soon after his time in the military. He became a deputy with the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department in 1980.

In 1989, Kitterle joined the Rialto Police Department and served in various capacities of law enforcement there.

Capt. Tony Farrar of the Rialto Police Department said Kitterle's absence has been felt both departmentally and on a personal level.
"(Kitterle) was kind of the go-to guy because of his experience and knowledge," said Farrar, who worked with Kitterle for nearly 20 years. "His sense of humor also drew people in, and it was just easy for people to be around him."

Kitterle worked in patrol, narcotics, on the SWAT Team, the Street Crime Attack Team and as a detective, among other duties.

De Anda said Kitterle's work ethic influenced those who worked with him.

"He seemed to be good at everything he did," said De Anda, who worked with Kitterle for 18 years. "He was looked up to and he was a leader."

Kitterle most recently worked as a homicide detective and excelled at the job, according to De Anda.

"He was involved in several high profile homicide investigations, which led to the arrest of several felons," De Anda said.

Kitterle began feeling ill while interviewing a suspect during a 2007 homicide investigation, which he worked on for more than 24 consecutive hours. He was taken to Loma Linda Medical Center for surgery to remove a brain tumor.

Kitterle is survived by his wife, Rita; his mother, Joyce; his father, August; two sisters; two sons, Kyle and Chad; and two grandchildren.

Services will be held today at Calvary Chapel Church at 1391 W. Merrill Ave., in Rialto at 10a.m. Flowers can be sent to the church or a donation can be made in Kitterle's name to the City of Hope's brain cancer research efforts.
Contact Akweta Colbert at (626) 301-7280 to contribute to Mike Chen's general brain tumor program.

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I was honored to work with Kurt too, I started with Rialto Police Department in 1988, and Kurt and I worked together in 1989-2000 on Graveyard and we always took our lunch together at 0630 so that we could go to Bob's Big Boy. Even though they opened at 0700, The first Waitress that started there would open the door to allow us to come in and have either a sweet roll, coffee, or if the Cook was able to get the Griddle set up we could have some eggs or Pancakes.

In that half hour the second Waitress would come in to help her with the Morning crowds that would come in at 0700 to enjoy Breakfast. Lori was the Waitress that Opened the Restaurant, and Terry was the Waitress that came in at 0645 to get ready for the morning crowd.

Kurt's Personality was one that was great he would make us all laugh, in the morning, Lori was one that you could almost say anything in front of and she was almost never embarrassed or bothered by it. Terry was the opposite. I liked Terry, but she was Married, and well we went one and had a good thing with fresh coffee, and a fun half hour teasing and making Lori laugh.

One day Terry was Upset, She was having marriage problems and had decided to separate from her husband. She was shy, and well as time was going on, Kurt was working with Lori behind our backs and Kurt was instrumental in pushing Me to ask Terry out on a date. I was reluctant since she was just in a separation from her Husband a thing that is usually a trial situation, and in a lot of situations the Marriage gets resolved and the couple goes on!

Well I took a chance and asked Terry out on a Date, this was in June of 1990, and if it wasn't for Kurt, I would not have met or married my wife today! I am happy to say that Terry went on to Divorce her husband, and she moved into an apartment I moved in a short time later and we have been together ever since. We got Married in October 19, 1995, & have been together ever since.

When my Motorcycle Accident Occurred, when I had basically became 100% Disabled, My Wife stood by my side and we have struggled though a great deal but we are still together and we have a great rock in each other. I love her very much and I don't know what I would do with out her. I partially have Kurt to Thank for that, I am just Sorry for what had happened to Kurt, He was always up. Even when he had his second or third Open Brain surgery he was up. Pleasant and still working on making jokes. He is one of a kind! I will miss him dearly!!

Buck Stewart
BS Ranch

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BSRanch, your story is so sweet you've made me cry!!

Rest In Peace Cpl. Kitterle. From the sounds of it you will be greatly missed by everyone who's lives you have touched.

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RIP Cpl. Kiterle
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