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Former SCV sheriff's captain remembered as 'humanist in every sense of the word'

Jerry Conklin's life celebrated at Real Life Church

Posted: December 6, 2013 6:48 p.m.
Updated: December 6, 2013 6:48 p.m.

Memorial ceremony held Friday for former Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station captain Jerry Conklin.

 

Friends and family members gathered at Real Life Church on Friday to celebrate the life of Jeremy “Jerry” Ide Conklin, a man described as a true friend and an inspiring leader.

As captain of the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station from 1992 to 1994, Conklin served as the de facto chief of police for the local community. He retired from the Sheriff’s Department in 1994 and died Nov. 14 at USC Keck Hospital in Los Angeles from complications related to open heart surgery. He was 75.

The characteristic speakers remembered most about Conklin was his acceptance of people he met.

“If Jerry befriended you, you had a buddy. You had a friend,” recalled Tom Edgington, Conklin’s close friend and a retired member of the Sheriff’s Department. “He didn’t care about political views or social statuses. If he liked you, he really liked you.”

Gary Frakes, a longtime friend of Conklin’s, remembered him as a “humanist in every sense of the word.”

“He went out of his way to help others,” Frakes said. “He had a lot of glittering facets to his heart.”

Although Conklin’s wife did not speak, family friend Jeff Springs read a written statement on her behalf, adding, “There was something so meaningful in every minute we spent with him.”

More than 200 people were on hand for the ceremony.

Conklin served nearly 30 years with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in political science from San Fernando Valley State College, now California State University Northridge, after two years in the Navy and joined the Sheriff’s Department in 1965.

Conklin is survived by his wife, Jane Conklin, daughter Tracey Conklin Baratta, son-in-law Anthony Baratta, son Ryan Conklin, stepdaughter Tracy Diaz, son-in-law Gary Diaz, stepson Douglas Holm, grandsons Hayden Baratta, Nathan Holm, Danny Diaz and Derek Diaz, and his first wife, Patty Heath, and her husband, John Heath.

 

 

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