Flags fly at half-staff to honor Surles | MassCops

Flags fly at half-staff to honor Surles

Discussion in 'Line of Duty Death News' started by kwflatbed, Jul 5, 2008.

  1. kwflatbed

    kwflatbed MassCops Angel Staff Member

    By Elsie Hodnett

    PELL CITY – Flags are flying at half-staff to honor a fallen police officer.
    Kenneth “Greg” Surles, 29, died at 9:50 a.m. on Friday.
    Surles was injured in a collision on June 18, while on routine patrol, at the intersection of U.S. 231 and Cropwell Drive/Kings Circle.
    “This is a sad day for Pell City and the brotherhood of police officers across the nation,” Mayor Adam Stocks said. “Officer Surles was a six-year veteran of the Pell City Police Department. He was the epitome of professionalism and was an excellent example of shining a positive light upon himself and the community which he served. Greg was not only a friend to me, but to anyone he encountered.”
    Surles was a 1997 graduate of St. Clair County High School in Odenville.
    His first job in law enforcement was with the Talladega County Sheriff’s Department. He worked with that department for two years before taking a job with the Odenville Police Department.
    Surles worked as a police and K-9 officer with the Odenville Police Department from 1999-2002, when he joined the Pell City Police Department.
    Surles and his wife, Robin, had been married for five years, and had two daughters, Makensi, 4, and Madalyn, 11 weeks. He is also survived by his parents, Laura and Ken Surles, and two sisters, Tammi Campbell and Lori Mullins.
    “Through this tragic accident, Greg has touched more lives than we could ever possibly imagine,” Stocks said. “While Greg fought for his life for 17 days, our community rallied around him and his family.”
    Stocks said the Surles family appreciates the cards, e-mails, hospital visits, food baskets, the show of support, love and solidarity and, most importantly, the power of prayer that has been offered to them.
    “Through this most difficult time in their lives, please continue to pray for the family, especially Makensi and Madalyn,” Stocks said. “These two little girls will never get to know their daddy like they should be able to, yet they will soon learn that their daddy has forever changed a city for the better. When they look back on this time, they will see how a tight knit community became even tighter, and how their father touched many lives during his courageous battle.”
    Police Chief Greg Turley said Surles was the first officer to die in the line of duty for Pell City.
    “This is devastating for his family, our Police Department, and our community,” he said. “Greg was a great man, a great father, and a great officer.”
    Turley said when he interviewed Surles and asked what he wanted in a law enforcement career, Surles said, “I want to be a good street cop and get dope off the streets.”
    “Greg held up to that with honor,” Turley said. “He was one of our best. He treated the toughest suspects with dignity and respect, and volunteered with numerous programs. I have never known any officer to be more selfless, caring, kind and loving.”
    Turley said although officers can be involved in numerous dangerous situations, it is senseless and shocking that something simple like crossing the road would kill anyone.
    “The thing I will miss most about Greg is his heart and his smile,” he said. “Police work is very stressful, and Greg would pick morale up. Greg Surles was an inspiration to me.”
    St. Clair County District Attorney Richard Minor said Surles was the epitome of what a police officer is and should be.
    “Greg lit up a room,” Minor said. “He went to work every day putting his life on the line for us. It is a tremendous loss, not just for his family, but for Pell City and St. Clair County. I hope everyone will continue to pray for his family during this time.”
    Minor said he has not received a report from the traffic homicide investigator regarding the accident.
    “We are awaiting the final report, and will proceed from there,” he said.
    Stocks said Pell City flags will continue to fly at half-staff for an undetermined period of time to honor Surles.
    “All our officers have a black band around their police badges to indicate the death of a police officer,” he said. Stocks said there will be a ceremony to retire Surles’ badge, number 828, at a future date. “I want to have a monument erected in Pell City to honor Greg, and we are working on those details,” he said. “We will also equip the police vehicles with decals that will commemorate Greg and his badge number. We don’t ever want to forget the sacrifice Greg has made for this city.”


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