Family, Friends & Fellow Officers Remember...

Officer Terry Lynn Griffith

Christiansburg Police Department, Virginia

End of Watch Sunday, September 18, 1994

Leave a Reflection

Reflections for Officer Terry Lynn Griffith

You are missed. A great friend, public servant, and Christian father. I'll never forget that day...this day. Heaven took the best. We that remain will never fill the void. God's speed my friend.

Dr. Mark N. Adams

September 18, 2018

I remember you helping me on the firing range .Thanks!

Retired Police Chief
RUPD

November 20, 2017

I was the Hills Department Store manager on duty on September 18, 1994 when Officer Griffith was killed. While I did not know Terry personally, the Christiansburg Police were always very quick to respond with help dealing with shoplifters. To this day, I can still remember what transpired that day and wish that I could have done something to make the outcome different. My thought and prayers are with his family.

Ronald Strauss
Former Hills assistant manager

September 18, 2014

Today is not an anniversary of your passing or any special date for that matter, yet a memory of you today led me to accidentally find this page. As I watch one of the movies that we saw together in 1973, "The Sting", I'm remembering a sign we always used to acknowledge each other even 20 years after the movie...the index finger slid across the bridge of the nose like they did in the movie. Simple, yes, but it was the type of friendship we had going all the way back to the first day you drove up at Cambria Baptist Church when you moved to C'burg from Florida with your mom and dad.

You were the best friend anyone could ever have. No matter if we hadn't seen each other in months, it was always like we had just talked. Didn't matter what the subject was, hunting, fishing, family, work, church or something else, we picked up right where we left off the previous time we were together.

Almost 20 years have passed since you were taken from us. I"ll never forget the day; how my life changed; the sense of loss; and trying to understand what couldn't be explained in a million years. The words the pastor offered at your service that ring specifically in my ears today. I still ask "why" and wonder what might have been for you and all that you loved so dearly.

My life has gone on, my girls are grown and married (they remember fondly the party you had at your river home just days before your passing), and what we would have all done differently had we known so few days were left.... I've remarried a wonderful women and have a step-son just as you had. With all of these wonderful blessings in my life, I still long for the memories and times we had together.

My father offered that in life if you are blessed to have the number of close friends equal to the number of fingers you have on one hand, then your life has been blessed. You've never been replaced my friend, and you never will! Others are close, but have never taken the place of the fun and brotherhood we shared.

Where ever you are, and whatever is ahead, know that you have never left the lives that you touched. I'll never forget you, all that you offered, the friendship you provided, and now the memories I am reflecting on as I write. Since the movie "The Sting" started this small tribute, I suppose the only fitting tribute is to offer that sign in closing...the index finger slid across the bridge of the nose.... Rest well my friend. Thanks for who you were and for the influence you still provide to those of us who remain!

Dr. Mark Adams

February 16, 2014

R.I.P. Brother, your sacrifice will never be forgotten. Thank you for going where others would not go and doing what others would be scared to do. Tonight 18 years after you left us, "A" shift dedicates our watch to you.

SGT. J.L. SLAUGHTER
RADFORD POLICE DEPARTMENT, VA

September 18, 2012

When I heard the news of Terry being killed I was working as a dispatcher in Md along with my then husband who was an officer..We immediately made plans to take off from work and return to our home community to attend the funeral of a friend and police officer.

My ex husband and I both worked for Montgomery Co Sheriffs Dept and that is now we got to know Terry. The departments are across from one another. Terry used to come to the sheriffs dept sometimes to just say hi. He was always smiling, that is the one thing I remember about him. He always seemed happy and ready to help anyone. I remember Christiansburg Pd was always willing to help us out when we needed extra back up. I now work for Christiansburg Pd and it is a great department who continues to remember those that have been lost. RIP Terry and I hope to see you again in heaven

Communications Officer Carolyn Light
Christiansburg Police Dept

September 17, 2012

Happy Birthday Daddy, i love and miss u dearly. I wish u were here for us to celebrate it but all in due time we will see each other again. I know you're up there watching me from day to day. I feel your eyes upon me and your strength in me when i am in need of something. Since i can't see you today i must come to the place you lay, it's a small place i find peace and i know you're with me there. I love you Daddy...

Victoria Lynn Griffith
Daughter

April 23, 2010

As the holidays approach our memories of you and your family return. We still think of you and the family often. rip we love you
Betty and family

Betty
DOC Fl

November 20, 2009

Your heroism and service is honored today, the 15th 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 murdered in the line of duty on April 24, 2005 while serving as a Pittsburg, CA police officer.

Rest In Peace. I hold your family and friends in thought and prayer today.

Phyllis Loya
mother of fallen officer Larry Lasater

September 18, 2009

After reading the reflections others have left about Officer Griffith, my heart is full. I feel almost as if I knew him. I am overjoyed at the legacy he left and at the love his family has for him and that he obviously had for them. But that makes it all the more difficult to think that he is gone. Having lost my own father when I was 11, I have come to understand that the greater the love, the greater the loss. It gives me great pleasure to read that Officer Griffith knows Jesus. It will be my honor to meet him when I get to heaven!

Sister in Christ & Grateful Citizen

September 28, 2008

My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

Former Police Officer
District Heights (MD) Police Dept.

September 17, 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 © 1993 - All Rights Reserved
and may not be duplicated without permission

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

April 2, 2008

Several people attended a wreath laying ceremony at your grave site this morning. It was a cool, brisk, beautiful morning. It has been 13 years today that you went to be with our Lord. Your testimony and legacy continues today. I just wanted to say you were the best Husband, Father, Christian, and Friend I have ever known. We miss you more than words could ever express. We are so sorry you are gone but more importantly we are so very happy that your were here! Your children are doing well. John is 13 and is my "protector". Victoria is 15 and just as beautiful as you said she'd be. She wants to be a child psychologist. Ashley is 22 and works for the Sheriff's Dept. Your step-son Adam is married and living in Honduras doing missionary work. We have 3 gran babies by Adam and Melissa. (Ages 3,2,and 1 and another due in 6 weeks). Your step-son Rob is living in the Adirondacks Mountains, New York. He helps run a wilderness program for troubled teens and he's quite good at it. Thank you for all you taught us and for being the Godly leader of our home. Until we meet again, I am, missing you terribly:
Diane
([email protected])

Diane Trout Griffith
Wife

September 18, 2007

Heroes and the sacrifices they make are never fogotten. Officer Griffith, you are a true hero and you are not forgotten.

SPO
Salem, Va PD

September 18, 2007

I was just thinking about Officer Griffith this week, after hearing about the shootings at Virginia Tech. It immediately brought back to me how horrible it was to lose him in the shooting in 1994. I remember how it seemed like the whole county showed up for his memorial services, with officers arriving from other communities and states to pay their respects.

I didn't know him well, but he was so friendly and warm-hearted whenever he stopped by the Sheriff's Office, which is just a block or two from the Christiansburg Police Department. I clearly remember to this day the last time I talked to him, only a week or two before he died. He was showing us photos of his family in the 911 dispatch room in the Sheriff's Office, having wrapped up a call with our deputies. He just glowed with love for his wife and children as he proudly flipped through his photos in his wallet, with a big smile as he pointed out who was who, how old they were, how big they were getting. I always enjoyed the quiet moments like that when the officers would have some momentary down time between calls and could stop by dispatch (we were tied to the phones and radio, so it was always nice to see the faces behind the voices on the radio).

I moved away from the area in 1995, but I have always kept Christiansburg and Blacksburg in my heart. When I heard about the events this week, it made me reflect on this earlier tragedy. Officer Griffith was a good man and a upstanding police officer. I am very glad to see this tribute to him online. I want his family to know that he and his dedicated service are not forgotten and we are forever grateful to him.

Jennifer Thorpe
Former Montgomery County Sheriff's Office Dispatcher

April 21, 2007

I was a Christiansburg Police Officer when I met Officer Griffith. While I was in the academy I could not shoot a gun very well. My first course of fire I shot a 55. Without being asked Terry stayed with me late after class and instructed me and within a few days I was shooting in the mid to high 90's just like that, that's the kind of person he was, giving without asking. We worked different shifts so we rode the same beat car. So Terry would pick me up for work and I would drive him home. Even after tough nights and days we always had a pleasant conversation. Our loss is God's gain.

Sgt. N.S. Parker
Christiansburg PD/Durham NC PD

April 14, 2007

officer Griffith , thank you for sharing the thin blue with me . although i never met you and at the time of your ultimate sacrifice i had only been an officer for 7 years , you are my brother and your service to law enforcement will never be forgotten . to officer Griffiths' family , no one knows the pain of his absence better than you , but please find some comfort in knowing that GOD does not make mistakes and on the very day that Terry gave his life another was born , my son Brandon , whose smile is as bright as Terrys' . may God continue to keep you and strengthen you and know that with each birthday my son celebrate i will remember Terry and celebrate his life . thank you again my brother for your sacrifice...we have the watch from here...rest in peace

officer val pickens
b'ham p.d./b'ham,al

April 6, 2007

I can not believe how long it's been. It has been 12 years and I still remember seeing you that very day on Sept 18. I miss you so much and you meant so much to me as a friend, just being there and joking and being that great husband you were to your family. I wish there were more people like you in this world. Why do the good die young and the best be taken. I miss you so much Terry and I know you are looking down on me and telling me to do the right thing. I will seeyou when my time comes and until then R.I.P my friend.

Jeff Putnam
family friend

October 8, 2006

I can remember this day like it was just yesterday, I was just starting the first grade at Falling Branch. That mid-September Sunday evening my dad left the house to go to the local department store to get something, my dad never left the house without his pistol, common for a police officer. My father heard what had happened and saw Terry running across the parking lot towards the Roanoke Road. That's when he found Terry on the ground and tried to help keep him with us, sadly Terry did not. That day I realized this town had lost our first ever on-duty police officer,and one of the best Police Officers. I'll never forget hearing the news it was like another loss in my family. And I couldn't even begin to think about how his daughters, son, stepsons, and wife felt when this happened, cause I know this was the worst thing ever for his Daughter Ashley to realize that her dad was gone. I couldn't even imagine how I would feel. I plainly remember when my baby brother died, June 9th, 1992, Terry came by the house to show his support for my family and in that visit I remember Terry coming up to me and giving me a hug and saying he was sorry and that everything would be alright. When Terry did that it meant the world to me. My father and Terry were good friends for many years and it just took a big piece out of my dads heart when he was gone. They grew up together, lived near eachother, worked with eachother but thru different police organizations, our families were very close. I remember my father telling me about one time when my dad which was Montgomery 29 was dispached to the eastern part of Montgomery County. Dad was in a struggle with a suspect, A few minutes went by before my dad radio'd in and he said,"MONTGOMERY29,... 10-33...... 10-33 I NEED HELP". No one dispached my father back, every on call deputy was on the other side of the county, all of a sudden my father heard Montgomery29 im 10-76 (enroute)and who was it, a Christiansburg Police Officer and great friend Terry Griffith. Out of the legal town limits, there came Terry to the rescue to help my father detain this suspect. I'll never forget this story for as long as I live. I love Terry so much, and I know he with my brother in a better place. Then another bad accident happened, I was a freshman at Christiansburg High School When my town of Christiansburg lost another officer on May 9, 2003, Officer Scott Hylton. This really just tore me up because with my father being a former police officer I have the up-most respect for anyone who wears a uniform or a badge. As the years went by I have wanted to become a police officer even more but now im a senior, at Christiansburg High School and now I am putting the police officer dream on hold, but every time I see a Ford Crown Victoria with a light bar on it, I want to presue that dream job even more. But I conclude on this note I miss Terry so much and my thoughts and prayers go out to the Griffith Family and all of the police officers that serve and protect this town, this county, this state, and this great nation. God Bless You. You are all in my thoughts and prayers.

Thanks Again,

Justin Miles
Christiansburg Va, 24073

Justin Miles
Friend

November 17, 2005

I was just a little girl when my father was shot. Even though so small I can still remember him taking me fishing when he was here. I miss my father very much and I'm thankful for all of those people out there who miss him to.

Victoria Griffith

October 13, 2005

Thanks yoy for your service. May God continue to bless your family, friends and department.

Patrol Officer
Chesterfield County Police Dept.

September 18, 2005

I have known Terry since he and my x-husband went to the academy together. I still miss him and his family. He helped me with firearms when I got on Va Tech P.D. We had our own family christmas parties so we could bring the kids together without drinking going on. People called him "Elvis the Christ" because of his love to God. Now I wonder who is laughing and who is crying. I miss his fun ways and laughter at football games. (Dolphins still the best) My family went fishing with him and he helped my youngest catch his first fish. He left behind a beautiful wife and great kids and I am crying as I write this because he left behind character, love honesty and loyality most policemen forget about after joining the department. Vito, the kids and I miss him everyday and lost a greatly loved friend.
Ashley, don't just be a "cop" be one like your dad. One who like Jesus said "Go the extra mile" have compassion. Use the Fire within you that your dad gave you to be the best. I know he loved all of you and talked about you all the time. I wish he had more time with John but in time I will tell him someday about his dad and my experiences along with Vitos we had with his parents. Terry you were the best and not just because you died in the line of duty. You were a great person and friend. We miss you forever.
Betty Schwalenberg Grimaldi

Betty
Retired

August 1, 2005

I knew Terry years before I got into law enforcement. We went to church togeather. We would visit with each other, while my wife & Diane would be in the livingroom talking Terry & I would be sitting at the kitchen tableeating cake & drinking ice tea.I still remember when you heard the new I was going to be a Daddy again how you come running off your pourch to hug my neck. I taken this for granet until the night I came back from a wrestling match in Roanoke and stopped at McDonalds in Christiansburg. I could hear people talking about an officer being killed. I did not think twice until I got home to find my wife crying and to tell me Terry was gone. My Brother I still miss you and feel even closer to you now because I feel you are watching my back from above. You are a hero and I will never forget you & how you laid your life on the line. I miss you Bro.

Deputy Sherrif Chip Shrader
Montgomery County Sheriffs Office

March 31, 2005

I was a junior at Giles High School when Officer Griffith was killed. I couldnt believe an officer in the New River Valley was killed. It seemed like that kind of thing only happend far off. Then this past May, a second Christiansburg officer was killed. One that served Radford University while I attended RU. Only three short weeks later, we lost one of our own in Chesterfield County to gunfire. Ive only been in law enforcement a few short years, but I have been to too many officers' funerals. We've been hit hard here in Virginia in the past, but it is because of fine officers like Terry Griffith that laid down there lives in service, that makes it all worth it.
God Bless you Brother Griffith, your family, The CPD, and our other brother and sister officers and deputies back home in the New River Valley.

Scott Sparks
Chesterfield County Police Department, VA

March 4, 2004

I was unaware that this site exsisted until a friend showed it to me after our agency lost another officer. Scott Hylton made the second for the CPD. My father was the first. I was only 10 at the time but it was the hardest thing I have ever lived through. I want to say how thankful I am to have had the support that I did. My family, friends, and the department when wonderful. And today they are even better. I have become very close with a lot of the officers there and I enjoy each of them so much. Some of them are very special and they know who they are. I am also grateful to know some of the people at the Montgomery County Sheriff's Department. They have been wonderful through all the hard times. Loosing someone is never easy but in the way that these officers died it is even harder. I hope that the Law Enforcement Community will always honor their fellow officers with the respect that I have seen. I loved my father very much and love each and every officer I know. I am truly blessed and cannot wait to be a part of this department and follow in my father's footsteps. I miss you Daddy and love you so much. Watch over all my guys.
Love ya always and forever
Ashley Griffith

Ashley Griffith
Christiansburg VA

Want even more control of your Reflection? Create a free ODMP account now for these benefits:

  • Quick access to your heroes
  • Reflections published quicker
  • Save a Reflection signature
  • View, edit or delete any Reflection you've left in the past

Create an account for more options, or use this form to leave a Reflection now.