Family, Friends & Fellow Officers Remember...

Officer John A. Vickers

El Centro Police Department, California

End of Watch Tuesday, May 3, 1977

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Reflections for Officer John A. Vickers

In 1977 I was a San Diego police officer. I had arrested one of these suspects days prior for parole violation (under the influence of heroin) and placed him in jail. A violation of his parole should have sent him back to prison. Instead, the courts decided to divert him to the local drug coalition. If the courts had done their job, these officers would still be alive. My deepest heartfelt condolences to their families. May they both rest in peace.

Michael Kerins
Patrolman, San Diego Police 1973-1981

June 15, 2023

Rest in peace always knowing that your service and sacrifice are always remembered by your law enforcement family.

Detective Cpl/3 Steven Rizzo
Delaware State Police (Retired)

May 3, 2021

"Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God."
Matthew 5:9

Chris Di Gerolamo
Federal Air Marshal Service

June 8, 2020

I am going to keep this brief: I had not visited this page in as many years, and i did not know of all this heart felt sentiment. I will spare every one my shame but would like to express my astonishment in finding this after so many years, and reading how my father, and this horrible event, affected the lives of others in such profound ways. For any who might find this after all this time, the door is open. For those I have missed, "Thank you". mwaterflea@gmail.

Michelle Costa
Daughter of Officer Vickers

February 3, 2020

John and his wife, D'Aun, were very close friends. My ex-husband was riding with John the night of the incident and had just ended his ride along prior to the shooting and had come home.

Just after the shooting, we received a call stating John and Officer Hennesay had been shot. We immediately went to John's home to be with D'Aun. She wasn't there, as she had gone to the hospital. John wasn't transported to the hospital at all. She had just received a call stating her husband had been shot.

The circumstances that followed will never be forgotten, nor will Officers Vickers and Hennesay. May they rest in peace.

Suzanne Storm
Imperial County Probation Dept.

January 10, 2020

In 1987 I was a Police Officer in a neighboring city but I knew I wanted to be an El Centro Officer. One day I was on a ride along with Officer Joe Ramsey #324 (Joe retired In 1995 and died July 2019). Joe took me to the site of where this tragedy took place and told me what transpired. He also told me that he had to quit the department for a while as it hit him hard, he eventually came back. While on that ride along the El Centro PD Chief offered me the job, two weeks later I was sworn in as an El Centro Police Officer. My Sergeant when I was done with my field training was on duty that fateful night, Vickers and Hennesay were part of his squad. At the time he was an officer and officers also did dispatch duty, it happened to be his night as a dispatcher, he also told me the story of what transpired. Whenever I had a civilian ride along I took them to the trailer park where this happened. One thing when I started with ECPD my issued badge was generic, no number on it, if we wanted our number on it we were authorized to buy one. The Officers who had been issued this badge would scratch their initials into the back of it, one of the set of initials was JV, I can only guess it was for John Vickers. I know this wouldn’t have been the badge worn that fateful night as they retired both Officers Badge Numbers. I medically retired in 92 and moved away. A few years ago thanks to social media I found out that Imperial County had done a memorial for fallen Officers in the county. I contacted an El Centro Officer who was involved in it and told him about my old badge. He was going to investigate and try to find it as the PD changed the style of the badges and he wanted to post it at a small memorial museum. I lost contact with that officer but I hope he found it.

Officer Don Barrows
El Centro PD - Retired

July 25, 2019

Rest in peace Officer Vickers.

Rabbi Lewis S. Davis

April 15, 2019

I will remember that night for as long as I live. I worked at the Denny's and knew both officers. More than that, my husband, at the time, is the one who made that initial arrest. I will never forget the look on his face when he came home and took me to a fellow CHP officer's home because the shooting was so close to our home and there were still suspects on the loose. The days that followed are a blur. The feelings are not.

Barbara Dorlaque
Retired EMT

July 2, 2018

Rest in Peace Brother in Blue. You are honored on the 41st anniversary of your EOW. Thank you and your family for your sacrifice.

Officer Mike Robinson (Ret)
Upland Police Dept. CA

May 3, 2018

I had arrested the 24 year old in Sad Diego just days before this tragedy. He had violated his parole (for armed robbery) and should have been on his way back to prison. He was a heroin addict and the courts diverted him to a drug treatment program rather than prison. When I heard what happened, my heart broke. I am 71 years old now it it still hurts. I am so sorry. I don’t know what else to say. I am sorry.
Mike Kerins
San Diego Police
1973 - 1981

Patrolman Mike Kerins
San Diego Police

April 26, 2018

Another year has passed and you are still admired and respectfully remembered in the hearts and minds of so many. My thoughts and prayers are with your loved ones and friends on this anniversary of your EOW. You will never be forgotten.

James Sheppard
Father of Sgt. Jason L. Sheppard EOW 12/7/06

May 3, 2010

I was there that early morning. Responding to the scene to assist ECPD. The scene was burned into my mind as I observed everything in a daze. My partner and I began a search and interviewed anyone and everyone that was out and about.

Then we search motel after motel on nearby Adams Ave. Across the street, they were located hiding in a motel room they had just rented. They were arrested and convicted. But that morning, we all met and together went over and over everything, thinking how unreal it all was.

I had backed up John just a few nights before only the results of this backup were different. There would be no coffee, or jokes. Our lives had changed forever.

I will never forget John and Art. Nor the lessons I learned from their sacrifices.

Sgt Daryl Stogner
Imperial County Sheriff's Dept.

November 14, 2009

Rest in Peace, Officer Vickers. Your sacrifice is not forgotten.

Officer 11169

October 22, 2009

Your heroism and service is honored today, the 32nd anniversary of your death. Your memory lives and you continue to inspire. Thank you for your service. My cherished son Larry Lasater was a fellow police officer who was murdered in the line of duty on April 24, 2005 while serving as a Pittsburg, CA police officer.

Time never diminishes respect. Your memory will always be honored and revered.

Rest In Peace

Phyllis Loya
mother of fallen officer Larry Lasater

May 3, 2009

RIP.You will never be forgotten.


November 1, 2008



May 5, 2008


I was in the same second grade class with you and Kenny Hennesay. My father worked for the Sheriff's Office at that time, and I know they were acquainted with each other. Given the nuance of a 2nd graders memory, I had convinced myself they all worked at the Sheriff's Office, and only realized your dad worked for E.C.P.D. when I found this memorial page today.

I remember visiting your home after your father's memorial. I remember the look on your and Kenny's face that day. I remember the lasagnas that my mom made and how horribly sad and ackward it felt to confront parental mortality at that age. I remember being afraid that it could happen to my own father. I remember your fondness for the color pink, and how cute you were, even in the eyes of a second grade boy.

I have often wondered what happened to you and Kenny and I have prayed for both of you on many occasions since that time. I hope you and your family are well and want you to know how deeply sorry I am for your loss. I am grateful for the service that Officer Vickers and Hennesay gave to their community and to their country. Even more so since I became a parent three years ago.

I trust that these memories don't cause you to feel any more pain than you have already experienced. I remain a devoted fan of law enforcement, and this tragic event (more than any other) is a large part of the reason why.

You are welcome to email me at [email protected]

Warmest Regards,


W. Bruce Anderholt II
old friend

April 5, 2008



March 20, 2008

"The Badge"
He starts his shift each day
To respond to calls unknown.
He drives a marked patrol car.
A police officer he is known.
He's paid by the citizens' taxes
To make it safe on the streets.
But he usually has a second job
'Cause a waitress has his salary beat.
Now he doesn't know a holiday
'Cause he works all year round.
And when Thanksgiving and Christmas finally arrive
At his home he cannot be found.
He's cursed and assaulted often,
The one whos blood runs blue.
He seldom ever gets a thanks,
To some he's just a fool.
His friends are always other cops
'Cause people just don't understand
That underneath his badge and gun,
He's just another man.
He knows there might not be a tomorrow
In this world of drugs and crime.
And he gets so mad at the court system
'Cause the crooks don't get any time.
And each day when he leaves for work,
He prays to God above.
Please bring me home after my shift
So I can see the ones I love.
But tonight he stops a speeding car,
He's alone down this ole' highway.
It's just a little traffic infraction.
He does it everyday.
Well, he walks up to the driver's window,
And his badge is shining bright.
He asked the guy for a driver's license,
When a shot rang through the night.
Yes, the bullet hit its mark,
Striking the officer in the chest.
But the Department's budget didn't buy
Each officer a bullet-proof vest.
So he lay on the ground bleeding.
His blood wasn't blue - His blood was red.
And briefly he thought of his loved ones
'Cause in a moment the officer was dead.
In the news they told the story
Of how this officer had died.
And some who listened cared less,
But those who loved him cried.
Well, they buried him in uniform
With his badge pinned on his chest.
He even had his revolver,
He died doing his best.
Written By:
David L. Bell
Richland County Sheriff's Department
Columbia, South Carolina
Used with Special Permission of the Author
Copyright © 1999 - All Rights Reserved
and may not be duplicated without permission

Investigator David L Bell
Richland County Sheriff's Dept., Columbia, SC

August 28, 2007

Thank you for remembering my father.

Michelle A Costa

May 16, 2007

Know that you will always be remembered for your sacrifice.

Cpl/1 Steven Rizzo
Delaware State Police

May 3, 2007



February 6, 2007

Rest in God's loving embrace, hero. You will never be forgotten.

Wisconsin L.E.O.

November 30, 2006

I remember John Vickers as one of my first "unofficial" Field Training Officers when I was a Reserve Officer for the El Centro Police Dept. in 1976. That is where I started my law enforcement career. This year I celebrate 22 years as a Cody Police Officer, 10 years as Chief. I often remember John for his sense of humor and his patience in working with a "rookie
reserve officer." He got me off to a good solid start in law enforcement, and I learned a lot of good habits by watching him.
Thanks John !

Chief Dan Kelsey
Cody Police Department, WY

September 3, 2003

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