Family, Friends & Fellow Officers Remember...

Chief of Police James Leonard Speer

Calipatria Police Department, California

End of Watch Friday, April 10, 1998

Leave a Reflection

Reflections for Chief of Police James Leonard Speer

Chief of Police Speer, rest in peace.

Rabbi Lewis S. Davis

May 17, 2019

Chief Speer I.D.700 and I would back each other up when we worked grave yards and swing shifts. I was with Westmorland Police Department and respected Ed beyond what words can describe. He was one of the best cops it was my honor to know. Bill Hays Westmorland Police Department I.D.952

Bill Hays Corporal #952
Westmorland Police Dept.

October 6, 2018

I remember moving to Calipatria in 1993 from Germany. My wife began working as a Correctional Officer at Calipatria State Prison. I was pulled over by Chief Speer while driving my chevrolet 1500 which was lowered with custom rims and custom paint. I did not violate any traffic laws but the chief wanted me to drive the homecoming queen in the parade which I did. From then on Chief Speer and I would talk and he would wave every time I saw him. He was always very professional and nice. It was very heartbreaking to hear that Chief Speers was killed years ago. I have found memories of Chief Speer and a lot of respect for his service of 40 years. RIP Chief Speer, you will never be forgotten.

Jon Hoef
Friend

September 15, 2018

Rest in peace hero.

Lt. Jim Russo

April 11, 2018

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

Marshal Chris Di Gerolamo
Federal Air Marshal Service

April 10, 2018

Rest In Peace Brother in Blue. Thank you and your family for your sacrifice and service.

Officer Mike Robinson (Ret)
Upland Police Dept. CA

April 10, 2018

Chief Speer ,I worked with him when I was an Imperial County Animal County Animal Officer and then again when I was Mayor of Calipatria what a great man. I remember the day I gave him and Evelyn the kitten they named Dyson another good manFrank Dyson

Royal E Sage A.C.O.
Retired

January 19, 2018

Chief, I will always remember you... it has been so long now since that day whan you went to heaven, and then the love of your life went to be with you... so many years now but still shed a tear when I visit your gravesite... we sure had some good times working together.. you held us and kept us safe for so many years.. thank you for your leadership, knowledge, kindness and the love and understanding you gave us ... you were not only my chief, but also a great friend and father figure ...Gracias...May our Lord Jesus aslways keep you....

Sgt Estrada Jose
Calipatria PD/California Dept of Corrections Off

March 18, 2017

Leonard was truly one of a kind. He was the Sheriff of Imperial County, then Chief of Calexico Police Department and then, because of his true passion for law-enforcement, he became just a police officer for Brawley Police Department for several years before finally becoming the Calipatria Chief. I don't say "just" in any disparaging way, on the contrary, I said that to illustrate his great passion, humility, and true leadership at all supervision levels. Leonard may have been a "new" police officer in Brawley, but he was certainly the informal leader. Despite being the Sheriff of Imperial County and holding a high position, as a patrol officer he never complained, never spoke poorly of anyone and was a great example for all of us young officers.

I think of Leonard often. When I was a very young snot-nosed officer, Leonard was there to take me under his wing and to teach me just how to be a cop, and more importantly a man. I still remember his great smile and sense of humor. After I left to another department, we stayed in touch but as things happen, I hadn't talk to him in a number of years before he was killed. His humility is something that will always stand out. Despite being the "old guy" he made just as many arrests as us young officers but there was a difference. He had great empathy for people. For example, after he handcuffed and processed a prisoner he would many times shake their hand and show them concern as he led them to jail.

It's funny how things become: I just realized that "old guy" is about my age now. It's been 30 years already; however, his memory is just as vivid. He was a wonderful man and I will always miss him.

Dave Moss, Captain
San Diego Sheriff's Department

November 25, 2014

Thank-you Chief Speer for everything you did for me and my family. I Enjoyed working for you when you were Calexico Chief of Police and then for the Calipatria Police Department. We Miss You and God Bless You.

Former Reserve Officer Sal Muñoz 714
Calipatria Police Department

November 11, 2014

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

Retired Wisconsin L.E.O.

April 16, 2013

Thinking of you and all of your loved ones on this day. Continue to keep watch over all of your loved ones.
Thank you for your dedicated service to others and know that you will never be forgotten as true heroes never die.

Bob Gordon
Father of Fallen Chicago Officer: Michael P. Gordon, EOW: 8/8/04

April 10, 2013

Not only was he a deputy but also held the position of Sheriff of Imperial County. Officers who stop me to this day recognize my name and talk to me briefly about who he was and what his service meant to them. Even in Death his light shines as a reminder of what it means to Protect & Serve.

John J. Speer
Nephew

July 15, 2012

Sir:
I am saddened to hear of your death. I did not know you as Chief but as Deputy. You stopped me and asked if I knew my tail light was out -- I did not as I had just bought my first car (used). You said "Well, can you get it fixed before you need to drive it again?" I told you my Daddy would help get it fixed and you said "Just let me know it's done Wednesday." I did and you bought me a soda. It was 124 degrees that day and only July.

Cynthia of West Monroe, LA
Civilian Survivor (40+ yrs)
May God bless and protect each one of you.
WMPD are always at the top of my prayer lists

June 10, 2012

My Grandpa Speer
He was the most amazing man I have ever met! He was my hero. I wil never forget the feeling I had when I found out what had happened. It was like my world had come to an end.
There is no greater man then him. He would do anything for one for any reason. Every single day we wish he could be here. My mom was his daughter. I see him in her every day.
Please make sure you tell the the people you care for the most how much you love them . You never know when they will be ripped away from you.

Grandaughter

January 19, 2012

Chief, thank you for teaching to be a successful police officer.
I proudly served under Chief Speer at Calexico and Calipatria Police Department.

Sergeant-Retired; Enrique Duran
Caliaptria Police Department

June 7, 2011

A star is dedicated to you on the 2010-11 Calipatria Police Patch for giving the ultimate sacrifice. thank you-Chief.

Officer Feliciano
Former Calipatria Police Officer

December 27, 2010

Sir, I want to thank you for your service. This is to show you that you have not and will never be forgotten. I pray that you and your family have peace. May God bless you and your family.

Sr. Deputy Sheriff Rodolfo L. Moreno Jr
Imperial County Sheriff's Office

May 9, 2010

Rest in Peace, Chief Speer. Your sacrifice is not forgotten.

Officer 11169

October 22, 2009

I'm proud to say that Chief Speer was my uncle, my dad's brother. I was pretty young when Leonard died, but I'll never forget how I felt at his funeral. Even though he was gone, he had affected so many people who wouldn't let his memory die. The procession from the funeral was so long, it was a steady stream of cars all the way from the funeral home, to the burial site, in the next town. I also remember there were so many men & women in uniform there that had worked with Leonard. I'll never forget how I felt to witness the 21 gun salute, in his honor.
I feel proud to know that my uncle was such a good man, that he risked his life protecting the innocent. His sacrifice will always be close to my heart.

Anonymous

March 6, 2009

YOU ARE A HERO JUST BY THE PROFESSION YOU CHOSE.

VANDENBERGHE
MANCHESTER, NH

May 1, 2008

Chief Speer:

No fellow California law enforcement personnel killed in the line-of-duty, should be forgotten.

How can I not take a moment to remember a Man who was a Commissioned National Guard Officer, Imperial County Sheriff, Police Chief in Calexico and a patrol sergeant for Brawley?

May You Rest - In - Peace.

Maj M. B. Parlor
USMC / LAPD

April 10, 2008

You have not been forgotten. Continue to keep watch over all of your loved ones and those still out on patrol. Thank you for your dedicated and long career to law enforcement. You are a true hero and heroes never die.

Bob Gordon
Father of Fallen Chicago Officer: Michael P. Gordon, EOW: 8/8/04

April 10, 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
Sergeant
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 20, 2007

Sir, I remember when you were my Chief back in Calexico. I have taken over your post since July/2000. We proudly hang your photo and a plaque in your honor.

It was an honor serving you and another honor holding your office. You are a tough act to follow, sir...RG

Chief Reggie Gomez
Calipatria Police Department

April 20, 2007

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