Family, Friends & Fellow Officers Remember...

Deputy Sheriff Dennis Ray McElderry

Davis County Sheriff's Department, Iowa

End of Watch Friday, January 3, 2003

Leave a Reflection

Reflections for Deputy Sheriff Dennis Ray McElderry

Dennis its been a year since i got the call that you had been killed. tonight at work i drove several times by the scene and thought of you every time. We had a heck of a snow tonight and several accidents. You are missed as much now as you were then. There was a really nice turnout today for the dedication of your memorial at the Law Center. It is a very nice one and will catch the eye of everyone as they drive by. Rest Well Job Well Done.

Trooper Douglas E. Rupe
Iowa State Patrol

January 4, 2004

Jan. 1, '04

Thinking of you, Jocelyn as I know you are thinking of Dennis today and
everyday, now and forever. Remembering Dennis on the anniversary of
his death. May God comfort all those who are still grieving your passing.
Life is difficult at times and the Lord Jesus wants to help carry our
burdens. He gives us many beautiful promises in His Word to help us
through our valleys. I pray you will feel His presence and know His
peace. God bless! May this year bring you one step closer in your
healing, Jocelyn. You are in my thoughts as all those painful memories
come flooding back. I'm glad you have so many sweet memories also.

Lynn Kole
Washington State

January 1, 2004

As the 1 year anniversary approaches to your passing I offer these thoughts. I read the fallen officers memorials and to this day I have tears in my eyes because I find it hard to find the words to understand why we loose those that are taken from their loved ones, friends, and co-workers. I spoke to the Sheriff of Davis County last year on a project I am working on to commerate fallen officers. The sheriff had advised me that no one had been killed from the Davis County SO. When I read that you had been killed I stared at my computer in disbelief and shock. As the year approaches I am still in some shock because I was born and raised in Belknap, Iowa as a child. I hope that your family, friends, and co-workers have the good memories even tho you weren't here to share them with them. To the Sheriff's Department and to the Bloomfield Police GOD BLESS YOU ALL!!!!!

Tonya Stephenson
Private Citizen, Aston, Pennsylvania

December 23, 2003

Rest in peace Brother Dennis, true heros are never forgotten.

Son of G. Truman Wortham EOW 7/15/73

Assistant Chief Carl Wortham
Sand Springs Police Dept. Okla

November 26, 2003

Rest in Peace Brother.

You have done your Job well.

Cadet Wayne Rosser
Orlando Police Academy--Class 04-04

November 22, 2003



November 4, 2003

Hey Dennis,

It's me again. I just wanted to let you know I was thinking of you. Today marks the one-year anniversary of my being in Iowa (October 17th). Can you believe it? I still can't believe all that has happened in this past year. Today, I couldn't help but think about the day I first moved out here. You picked me up from the airport. You had court earlier that morning so when you showed up you were in uniform. Everyone probably thought I was some criminal you had to transport or something! I remember when I first saw you, you were all smiles. I could tell that you were just so excited to finally have me out here. I remember you trying to kiss me hello but I was too busy complaining about the horrible plane ride and airport security. You just laughed and said that everything would be okay now that I was here with you. I remember telling you that you'd better be right. Of course, you were right. Things were good when we were together. Now that you are gone, it just seems like nothing is right or good in the world anymore.

I've heard that "it's better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all." That may be true, but boy does that loss hurt! It feels like someone filled up my heart with all this love. Then, just like that, ripped it away from me, tore it in half, stomped on it, and then gave it back to me and said "here use it, it still works." Yes it still works, but it will never again be the same. I am forever changed by this experience just as everyone else who loved you is. Despite all the pain I'm feeling and have felt, I am still so glad I got to spend the time I did with you, no matter how short it was. I wouldn't change a thing about it. I just wish we could've had more time.

You've been gone a total of 9 ½ months and my heart still aches for you, for what once was, and for what will never be again. The pain is lessening slowly, but you are still the first thing I think about when I wake up in the morning, the last thing I think about before I go to bed at night, and everything in between. I hope you know how much I still love you and miss you. Someone asked me the other day what I missed the most about you and I couldn't answer the question. There is just so much I miss about you and our time together.

I miss ……. (not in any particular order)

* Your smile your laugh, and all the laughs we shared.
* Your voice and the many conversations we shared. (Who am I going to have a 10 hr. conversation with now?)
* The hugs that when I asked what they were for you'd say "just for you" or "just 'cause". They always made me feel loved and feel safe.
* Hearing you tell me all that happened in your day, especially the law center stories.
* Laying my head on your chest at night just to hear your heart beat.
* Seeing your patrol car, truck, and "the beast" parked in the yard.
* Laying in bed and watching Lucky go crazy in the yard, looking at the stars in the sky, and talking until the wee hours of the morning.
* Snuggling with you on those cold winter nights and even on those hot sweaty summer ones.
* Sharing with you all the good, bad, and funny things the kids said and did during the day when you got home from work.
* All the contests we had that I'll never admit you won!
* Sitting and watching movies with you on the couch on your days off.
* Your appetite. You never complained about what was for dinner.
* Going with you to your parents place to "read the paper" and catch up on the gossip.
* Your wet sloppy kisses, hearing you say I love you and goodbye before you left for work.
* Hearing the tearing sound of "Velcro" as you took your vest off when you got home from work each night that let me know you came home safely.
* Giving you smackers, purple nurples, and trying to find your ticklish spots.
* Running into people in town and asking you afterwards if "this was someone we liked or someone we hated".
* Phone calls in the middle of the night just to say "hello", to find out what I was doing, and to see if I was "okay" (BTW, at 3 am I'm almost always sleeping!)
* Running my fingers along your eyebrows while you slept and many of times while you were awake.
* Chasing cows and helping you with chores on the farm even though I didn't have a clue what I was doing!
* Helping you trim your hair to "get it even" and threatening to just shave it all off!
* You, me, and the kids crowding in the truck to get wherever we were trying to go.
* The strong smell of your deodorant before you left for work.
* Hearing you snore and trying to twist your words around when you talked in your sleep!
* All the letters and cards you sent me just to let me know you were thinking about me.
* Inviting ourselves over to peoples houses conveniently at dinnertime!
* Your big ol' hands and how it used to feel when they held mine.
* All of you!

I could go on, but the list would never end. There is just so much I miss. As I write this list I realize that all the things I miss are also all the things I remember about you and love about you. I will carry these memories with me for the rest of my life. Thank you for giving me these memories and for sharing them with me. Most importantly, thanks for loving me and for being a part of my life.

Forever love,



"In This Life I Was Loved By You"

Let the world stop turning
Let the sun stop burning
Let them tell me love's not worth going through
If it all falls apart I will know deep in my heart
The only dream that mattered had come true
In this life I was loved by you

Lyrics by: Colin Raye


Jocelyne Brar
Dennis' fiancee

October 29, 2003

you will not be forgoten


October 24, 2003

I never met Dennis in person, but I did talk to him on the phone once. It was Christmas Day and I wanted to call Joce and Dennis to wish them a Merry Christmas. I will never forget, even on the phone you can tell that Joce and Dennis were meant for each other and madly in love. I was so happy that they were getting married. Joce told me so much about Dennis and how wonderful he is.

I am so sorry Joce for your tragic loss. I extend my sympathies to his children, parents, siblings and the rest of his family and friends. Joce, you truly found a wonderful man. He passed on, but I know he is taking care of you from above and wants nothing but for you to be happy. He will always watch over you to make sure your are safe.

I miss you Joce, all of your friends and family miss you! I can't imagine how difficult it is to be so far away from your friends and immediate family, especially in this difficult time. Stay strong. *hug*

Love Steph

Stephanie Subtelny

October 21, 2003


I never dreamed it would be me,
My name for all eternity,
Recorded here at this hallowed place,
Alas, my name, no more my face.

"In the line of duty," I hear them say:
My family now the price to pay.
My folded flag stained with tears;
We only had those few short years.

The badge no longer on my chest,
I sleep now in eternal rest.
My sword I pass to those behind,
And pray they keep this thought in mind.

I never dreamed it would be me,
And with heavy heart and bended knee,
I ask for all here from the past:
Dear God, let my name be the last.

Author Unknown

(We never thought it would be you either Dennis! We all miss you, love you, and think of you often. Thank you for your service to this community.)

Davis County, Iowa

October 2, 2003

You are in heaven now with the large department of Law Enforcement Officers. You have all been taken from us too soon.
I read your refelctions from your fiancee', family and friends and find many things in common with my Gilbert. It must be a "COP" thing.
We all miss all of you so very much.
It has been almost 6 years since my Gilbert was taken from us - Keep us all safe and remember how much all of us down here love you all up there.
Christina Androy

Widow of Gilbert G. Androy EOW 10-15-97
Fremont County Sheriff's Office
Sidney, Iowa

Christina Androy
Widow of Gilbert Androy EOW 10/15/97

September 30, 2003

I never met you, but I have just met Jocelyne and I know she misses you greatly. I think the fact that you two met was for a special reason, and the love you shared is very powerful. God Bless your fiance and your family and my thoughts and prayers are with them and you.

friend of Jocelyne

September 17, 2003

Jocelyne is a very lucky lady to have been touched by Dennis' life before it so tragically ended. There is not a better person that she could've met. Even though he is gone, he still continues to bring out the goodness in her. Dennis' spirit is now part of hers and even though things have been tough after the fact, she stands strong and reflects the goodness in her onto everyone around her. I still remember Dennis everytime I sell a bottle of Mountain Dew!!! He was a terrific person. A very honest and hardworking man. Had a smile that would fill the room with sunshine. He died protecting the public, it's what he was happy doing. I have tons of respect for the solid job that he did and tons of sadness for how it ended. Dennis you will always be missed by us here in Winnipeg. Take care Jocelyne, we miss you in Winnipeg too, and look forward to your next visit.

Love always from,

Cheryl Brar
Jocelyne's sister (Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada)

September 1, 2003

In a year that has seen our own department lose three heroes, I look back and pray also for the many other officers nationwide who have given their lives so that others might have a safer place to live. My thoughts and prayers go to Deputy Sheriff McElderry's family, friends and fellow officers. May you find comfort in knowing that his sacrifice will never be forgotten.

Honolulu Police Dept.

August 21, 2003

Deputy McElderry,

Even though I didn't know you, I mourn your loss. We are all brothers and sisters in law enforcement. When one of us dies, we all feel the pain. Thanks for helping to protect us all.

From reading these many posts I can tell that your family misses you terribly and that you are definitely loved. Please watch over your loved ones and help them work through this loss. I found this poem online, I hope it helps to give them some sense of peace.

Take care Deputy McElderry and RIP!


Letter From Heaven

To my dearest family, some things I'd like to say.
But first of all, to let you know, that I arrived okay.
I'm writing this from heaven. Here I dwell with God above.
Here, there's no more tears of sadness;
Here is just eternal love.

Please do not be unhappy just because I'm out of sight.
Remember that I am with you every morning, noon and night.
That day I had to leave you when my life on earth was through.
God picked me up and hugged me and He said, "I welcome you.

It's good to have you back again,
you were missed while you were gone.
As for your dearest family, They'll be here later on.
I need you here badly, you're part of my plan.
There's so much that we have to do, to help our mortal man,"

God gave me a list of things, that he wished for me to do.
And foremost on the list, was to watch and care for you.
And when you lie in bed at night the day's chores put to flight.
God and I are closest to the middle of the night.

When you think of my life on earth, and all those loving years.
Because you are only human, they are bound to bring you tears.
But do not be afraid to cry: it does relieve the pain.
Remember there would be no flowers, unless there was some rain.

I wish that I could tell you all that God has planned.
If I were to tell you, you wouldn't understand.
But one thing is for certain, though my life on earth is over.
I'm closer to you now, than I ever was before.

There are many rocky roads ahead of you and many hills to climb;
But together we can do it by taking one day at a time.
It was always my philosophy and I'd like it for you too;
That as you give unto the world, the world will give to you.

If you can help somebody who's in sorrow and pain;
Then you can say to God at night......"My day was not in vain."
And now I am contented...that my life was worthwhile.
Knowing as I passed along the way I made somebody smile.

So if you meet somebody who is sad and feeling low;
Just lend a hand to pick him up, as on your way you go.
When you're walking down the street
and you've got me on your mind;
I'm walking in your footsteps only half a step behind.

And when it's time for you to go....from that body to be free.
Remember you're not're coming here to me

Brother in Blue

August 21, 2003

I met Dennis briefly. Jocelyne and Dennis came down to Winnipeg so we could all meet him. He was a very nice man and quite funny. I was grateful to him because he made jocelyne very happy and i was very happy for her too. When i heard the news after new year's my heart sank. I would really like to give Dennis' family and friends my condolances. I also would like to say thank you to everyone that helped Jocelyne out and supported her. He will be missed greatly. Rest in peace.

Angie Nordine , Winnipeg
best friend of Jocelyne


I never had the pleasure of meeting you, but I just recently talked to your lovely fiance. God she misses you and by reading your reflections, I can see why. You were a strong man who served his community and did it well. Rest in peace, Dennis. God will take care of your beautiful family and those that are left behind will treasure your memory forever. Our prayers are with all of you.

Maryann Lynch
Elmira, NY

Dennis, after reading your letter to your fiancee, I determined, which wasn't that difficult, that you spent some time atop the CN Tower in Toronto, went to the Lion Country Safari, stopped by the Niagara Falls and rode on the Maid of the Mist, then had dinner at Planet Hollywood, followed later by a trip to the lake. That was an interesting way you put that, except I doubt you are a "jerk."

Sounds like you two had a fun time. I'm sure you'll have meny more in the memories of those you left behind.

The men and women of the FBI Agents Association bid you good times and good memories.

FBI Agents Association

Although your tour of duty is over, you will never be forgotten! May God bless you, your family and your co-workers. Rest in peace my brother.

Motor Officer Don Cone
San Diego Police Department

I'm usually not lost for words, but this time I don't know what to say - Jocelyne is a friend of mine, from College, and I've seen the absolute power of this person! It shines even stronger here in this situation. I thank God that I got to meet Jocelyne, that I have a chance to, in some way, share the pain of what she's feeling even if I can't even imagine how painful it must be. Jocelyne, you are in my prayers, and if there is anything I can do for you, by all means let me know. Usually I write songs about something that I feel strongly about, but this time, not even a song comes to me - perhaps I have to let you do the writing as you feel things most strongly - I would absolutely love to write a song for Dennis, in memory of him.

Dennis, I see how happy you made Jocelyne and I thank God that you were there to bring her that happiness!! That she was so happy was one part of God's plan, that you spend every day with God is another part of His plan - please help us understand the reasoning behind these plans.

God bless you Dennis, Jocelyne, and kids!!!! You are always precious in God's eyes! And God's eyes are the ones that count.

Your brother in Christ, and in life. (Winnipeg/Germany)

John (Germany)

"Jocelyne, I'm sorry for your loss. I'll be
thinking of you and the kids."



Dear Mrs. Jocelyne, I can't imagine how hard it is for you to come to this web site and leave all the support notes that you leave. I found this web site a few months ago and check it everyday to see if we've lost another brave warrior over the night. I have been in Law Enforcement for 15 years, and just like your Dennis love every minute of it. I have found myself to be a better father, husband, and police officer by reading the reflections that you and others have left. I often picture myself and my family in the situtitions that you and your family is going through. I think that if I have learned anything by locating this site and reading your reflections is I never leave home without holding my family and letting them know I LOVE THEM. Thank you for helping me to realize the things that we sometimes take for granted. God be with you!!
Deputy McElderry rest in peace WARRIOR!!

K-9 SGT C. Scott Baggett
Harpersville Police Department, Al.

Six months have come and gone. The days have gone so fast! This is the longest we've ever been apart. I still can't believe you aren't going to walk in that door, give me a big hug and tell me all about your day like you always did. You know, I check this website everyday and it saddens me to know that others have had to feel the same pain I felt, and still feel, in losing you. The good thing is that I know you are not alone up there. You've got Diane, your grandparents and I'm sure that you've managed to meet up with all of the other fallen officers as well. I'd be willing to bet that you are all probably up there swapping law enforcement stories and eating God out of house and home! LOL

Speaking of eating, Blake, Taylor, and I threw a potluck dinner to celebrate your birthday and Father's Day this year. (Happy Belated Father's Day and Birthday) We wanted to do something nice to honour you and we thought what better to do than to do than to do your favourite thing … EAT!!! The kids helped to decorate the place. Taylor helped to make the meatballs and the brownies. Both were a big hit. Needless to say, we had a ton of good food, awesome company, and great conversation. I only wish I'd known more of your friends so I could've included them in this day. You should've seen the kids, they all got a little carried away with water balloons and helium. You should've heard their voices! We all sent you messages to heaven attached to balloons. I hope you got our messages! All in all, we had a good time. The only thing missing was YOU!

Things have slowly started to change around here. The kids are growing like weeds (and acting like them too sometimes! LOL). As usual, they are keeping busy with sports and friends. Somehow, they always find time to bug me though! I've made a few changes in my life too. Just like the seasons change, so has my hair colour and my underwear! LOL I've slowly started trying to move on with my life, but it's been hard without you by my side. I've gone back to school and have even started spending time with a few people I'd bet you'd never thought would be friends of mine. I've even picked up your habit of stopping at the Law Center whenever I'm in Bloomfield. (Remember how I used to hate when you dragged me out there?) My friends and family in Canada even say my voice is starting to change a little too. ( I hope I’m not turning hillbilly …. oh wait ….. you said hillbilly was further south I forgot! LOL )

There have been a few changes around the house too. The place is a little cleaner and less cluttered. I finally got your desk cleaned off and the closets cleaned out. I never thought I'd see that happen! This house is a whole lot emptier and lonelier without you in it. It's just not the same being in this house without you. I walk around this house and all I see is your face and the memories we shared. Every conversation and everything I do somehow comes back to you. I look back and remember it all and most of the time I start to smile, then I laugh, and then I usually end up crying. It hardly seems fair that our time together was cut so short. I will never forget all the memories we shared. Our time together wasn't perfect, but it was good. More importantly, it was OUR time. No one can take that away from us. I've been doing my best to share some of my memories and mementos with the kids as much as possible in hopes that one day they will know what I always knew - What a great man their dad was.

Saying goodbye to you Dennis is the hardest thing I've ever had to do. Goodbye was always hard for me because it just seems so final. I still remember all the times you'd call me and refuse to hang up the phone until I said goodbye. One time I asked you what the big deal was. You told me that anything could happen and that you wanted to make sure we both said the things we wanted to say in case it was the last time we ever got to say them. I wish I'd taken your words of wisdom to heart the day you died. I don't think I told you all that I would've wanted to tell you if I'd known it would be the last time I'd be seeing you. Of all the things for you to be right about I wish you weren't right about that. I think after a while, I took for granted that you'd always come home to me safely because up until then you always did.

I've thought alot about or time together and I can't help but remember the first time I really had to say goodbye to you when you came up to visit me in Ajax. After the great three weeks we shared you told me you didn't know if you'd ever be able to afford to come up to visit again. I remember trying to be happy, but couldn't do it because I had no idea when or if I'd ever see you again. I remember kissing you goodbye and watching out the window as you drove away. I remember crying and grieving for you as if I'd lost my best friend. (I thought that day was bad, but your dying was a thousand times worse!) When you got home you called me to tell me you made it home safely. You told me that the hardest thing you ever had to do was to see me the way I was and to have to drive away. You told me if I had called you that night and asked you to turn around and "come back" you would've, but you still would have had to leave at sometime and that you couldn't stay. I wish I would have told you to "come back" because it would have meant we'd have one more day together. I wish I could tell you to "come back" now. I know how hard it must be to look at all of your friends and loved ones from heaven and to see their pain as they deal with you no longer being a major presence in their lives. You used to tell me that all you wanted was my happiness and the happiness for those you loved and that you would do anything to make that happen. You didn't care if you weren't happy as long as we were. I hope that someday we will all find the happiness you all desired for us. I know you weren't ready to go and if there were a way for you to "come back" you would. But even if you can't, I know you are around us all in spirit, watching over us and looking out for us as only you can. I am comforted by the fact that one day we will be reunited and will be able to spend eternity together. Wait for me and remember that I miss you and I love you …

Love always, Jocelyne

PS: Expect a lot of hugs, smackers, and of course …. PURPLE NURPLES!!! LOL


One More Day

Last night I had a crazy dream
A wish was granted just for me
It could be for anything
I didn't ask for money
Or a mansion in Malibu
I simply wished, for one more day with you
One more day
One more time
One more sunset, maybe I'd be satisfied
But then again
I know what it would do
Leave me wishing still, for one more day with you
First thing I'd do, is pray for time to crawl
Then I'd unplug the telephone
And keep the TV off
I'd hold you every second
Say a million I love you's
That's what I'd do, with one more day with you
Leave me wishing still, for one more day
Leave me wishing still, for one more day

By: Diamond Rio

Jocelyne Brar (Drakesville, IA)
Dennis' fiancee

Its almost been six months and even though its been this long people are still leaving reflections, which to me says a lot. Dad I miss you like everyone else, but i cant stop thinking of you when i go to bed i night. I know we have other Deputys and City cops but going to bed at night and feeling safe just isnt the same. I wish you were here. By the way happy Birthday. June 19th I love you

Jennifer Oldest Daughter
Bloomfield Iowa

I did not know Dennis, but I remember praying for his family and friends when I heard the devastating news about his death. Now I have had the opportunity to get to know Jocelyn--what a privilege! Keep your chin up, girl! God has a plan for each of our lives--it's a good plan, too. Our Father cares about each and every one of His children. Obviously, Dennis left an imprint on many, many lives with the love and kindnesses he shared. Because of all you have been through, J, you will carry on a ministry of love, giving out of your grief. Stay strong and close to the Lord; He will bless you. You and Dennis' family are in my prayers.
Kathy DeVore

Kathy DeVore

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