Saturday, July 14, 2012

Retired Major Bobby Ethridge Dies - UPDATE

Willard Robert (Bobby) Ethridge, age 63, of Lawrenceville, Georgia passed away on July 13, 2012.

Bobby was co-captain of the Bass High Football Team in Little Five Points, GA.

He served his country from May '67 to March '69 as an Airborne Ranger with a tour in Vietnam as a Squad Leader, Long Range Recon Patrol (LRRP), 4th Calvary, 25h Infantry Division. He had many achievements, while in the Rangers including graduation from NCO candidate school's Combat Leaders course in 1967; graduation from MACV Recon School in 1968 in Nha Trang, Vietnam; being awarded a Purple Heart in July of 1968 and the Silver Star for valor in action in January 1969.

Bobby joined the Dekalb County Police Department in October of 1969. While with Dekalb County, Bobby continued to obtain information and knowledge to better help him serve his community and his country.

Some of these accomplishments include attending Georgia Police Academy in January 1970; an Associate of Arts degree from Dekalb College in June 1978; graduating from FBI National Academy in 1980; going to Woodrow Wilson College of Law in 1983; graduating from Georgia State University in June of 1988 with a Masters in Science degree (with a 4.0 GPA). Bobby was instrumental in obtaining a $19, 000 grant for Georgia State University from the National Institute of Occupational Safety & Health because of his research on probable causes for robberies in convenience stores. He was appointed to Academy Director in November of 1988 and nominated Police Officer of the year in 1998 by the North Decatur Lions Club. Bobby retired in 1999 as Tucker precinct as a Commander in DeKalb County.

Bobby is survived by his wife, Jean; 3 children, 4 grandchildren, his step mother; brother and numerous other family and friends.

Visitation to be held on Tuesday, Jul. 17, 2012 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm & 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm. at Wages & Sons, Lawrenceville Chapel.

Service to be held on Wednesday, Jul. 18, 2012 2:00 pm - 2:30 pm at Wages & Sons, Lawrenceville Chapel.

Internment will be at Georgia National Cemetery, Canton, GA on Wednesday July 18, 2012 at 2 o'clock. Online condolences may be expressed at

Go in peace brother.


Anonymous said...

He was a funny guy. He was from the old school. Rest brother we got it from here. 41st Academy Class.

Anonymous said...

The major was a great guy, and I remember several extended discussions with him, always friendly and helpful. He was a pleasure to work with, I was sorry to see him retire, but happy for him. I never knew about his combat experience or his accomplishments with DKPD, he was not the kind of guy to bring it up.
My condolances and sympathy to his family and friends.
Rest in peace, friend.

Anonymous said...

He was the kind of hero officer that Dekalb used to attract and hire. It was always a hoot to work for and you did what he wanted because you wanted too, not because you were told too. He was one of the only really high level supervisors you could actually talk to any time you wanted. And, when the fight was on (like one night in Tucker when he was Center Pct Commander) he was the 1st to arrive as backup and jumped right into the fight like an MPO! I am proud and honored to have kicked ass with him at my side. Go in peace brother. You are greatly loved and missed.

Sgt Friendly (Ret)

Anonymous said...

That's an impressive list of accomplishments. I never knew him but wish I had.

Rick Caviness said...

Wow such a great resume from the military. I always heard he had served time in Vietnam, but never knew of his accolades which is very impressive.

I always enjoyed working with him, he will be missed. I will always remember Bike Week 1998 at Myrtle Beach.

Rest in peace!

Anonymous said...

It's nice to read the comments about my dad, Bobby Ethridge. He was a true American HERO! The world was a much safer place when he was here with us. I will always love you daddy. Brandi Ethridge Morris