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article imageFather and son killed in line of duty exactly 26 years apart

By Greta McClain     Oct 26, 2014 in Crime
Roseville - When Deputy Michael Davis Jr. took the oath to serve and protect his community, neither he nor his family and friends could have anticipated that he would be killed in the line of duty exactly 26 years after his father.
Michael Davis Jr. was just 16 years old when his father, a nine-year veteran of the Riverside County Sheriff's Department, was killed on October 24, 1988.
Michael Davis Sr., 34, was one of five Southern California deputies that were killed when their helicopter crashed. The National Guard UH-1H Huey helicopter carrying the deputies and three members of the California National Guard were on a night time training flight before beginning operations for an unpublicized anti-drug surveillance program. The helicopter crashed after striking power lines as it passed through an isolated canyon.
Davis Jr. did not let the tragic death of his father deter him from following in his father's footsteps. He joined the Placer County Sheriff's Department as a reserve deputy sheriff in 1996 before becoming a full time deputy in 1999. He proudly served his community for the next 15 years.
As reported by Digital Journal, Davis Jr. was killed Friday afternoon, October 24, 2014, after being gunned down by murder and carjacking suspect Marcelo Marquez.
Davis Jr. was known for his gentleness and his kind heart. His fellow officers recalled him arranging a graveside funeral service for a nameless child found in a garbage bag in 2012. Placer County Sheriff Ed Bonner recalled that was just the type of person Davis Jr. was, saying:
"That was a thing that, as a homicide investigator, Mike saw it, and his heart ached and he did something about it. "And that's who he was. Somebody who cared about the weakest and the most vulnerable and did what he could for them to lose his life so violently, it's hard."
Retired Riverside County Sheriff deputy, Rick Kothlow, recalls both father and son. After Davis Sr. was killed it was Kothlow who notified the family. It was Davis Jr. who opened the door of the family's home when Kothlow informed them of the tragic news. He told the Sacramento Bee:
“When we got to the door, [Davis' wife] Sandy just collapsed and started crying. She knew immediately what had happened. We talked to the kids separately. He understood. As a kid, he was a real trouper. He went to school that day. I tried to get him out, but he wouldn't leave.”
In what some call irony and others call a cruel twist of fate, Davis Jr.'s death comes 26 years to the day after his father death. Both died serving and protecting the community and both are remembered for their dedication and love of their community. Kothlow remembers the moment he learned Davis Jr. had been killed, saying:
“I looked at my calendar and said, ‘Oh, God.’”
More about Michael Davis Sr, Michael Davis Jr, Law Enforcement, Line of Duty, Placer County Sheriff
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