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Detective Willis Henry Gravell | Oro Valley Police Department, Arizona Oro Valley Police Department, Arizona

Detective

Willis Henry Gravell

Oro Valley Police Department, Arizona

End of Watch: Tuesday, March 28, 1989

Bio & Incident Details

Age: 49

Tour: 25 years

Badge # V42

Cause: Gunfire

Weapon: Gun; Unknown type

Offender: No suspects identified

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Detective Gravell was shot and killed while questioning a possible illegal immigrant from Mexico. During the questioning he requested backup. When the backup arrived they located Detective Gravell's body with two gunshot wounds in the chest.

Detective Gravell had served in law enforcement for 25 years and had previously served with the Dallas, Texas, Police Department and Boulder County, Colorado, Sheriff's Department. He was survived by his wife and two sons.

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I served with the Boulder County Sheriff's Department with Bill back in 1975-76 time, he was my partner on the shifts, I too remember that Texas drawl, but most I remember his love of his family and the job. We ran rotating shifts so we worked swing, days and nights. I remember his stories, his kindness, and one instance stood out on my mind, my son was about 11 and was home from school but my husband hadn't arrived and my son was anxious and scared (my husband was in charge of a halfway house) and our shift was over, Bill stayed after shift and talked to my son on the phone until I could get home which was about 20 minutes, by the time I got home all my son said was "Hi Mom, Bill is telling me some great stories about being my age in Texas, he saw a rattlesnake." Thank Bill.

Cherry Emerson
Former Boulder County Sheriff's Deputy Jail Division
November 15, 2015

 

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