OUR FALLEN

Thank You to Those Who Gave the Ultimate Sacrifice for the Madera POA

bernard mccluskey MPOA

Officer Bernard McCluskey

EOW - September 1, 1919

Officer Bernard McCluskey died of a gun shot.

The Madera Police Department is remembering the service and sacrifice of Officer Bernard McCluskey this month as he was killed in the line of duty on Sept. 1, 1919. Officer McCluskey was involved in a traffic stop which ended in an arrest. McCluskey was transporting the suspect to jail when the suspect pulled out a gun and shot Officer McCluskey. Two days later, Officer McCluskey succumbed to his injuries. The Department members will be wearing the black band for the month of September and the Department’s flags will be flown at half-staff. Officer McCluskey is memorialized on the County’s Law Enforcement Memorial located in Courthouse Park and at the National Law Enforcement Memorial in Washington DC. We thank all fallen Officers for their service.


Scanned articles from the Madera Daily Mercury from 1919.

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Thomas MPOA

Officer Richard Thomas

EOW - Thursday September 24, 1953

The tragedy had it’s beginning as officer Ernest Fernandez made his rounds checking doors in the downtown area. When he reached the Liberty Food Market at 312 Vineyard, Fernandez found the door unlocked. Suspecting that a burglary might be in progress, he phones police headquarters. Radio calls quickly brought officer Thomas and Van Curen to the scene. The two decided that they would enter from the front while Fernandez would cover the rear exit of the store.

Ramon Gomez Varges and his wife, Mary, had immigrated to Madera in 1939 and were registered aliens. When Ramon and Mary opened their new Vineyard grocery business they decided to set up housekeeping on the premises, hence a curtain across the back of the store.  As offers Thomas and Van Curen eased their way toward the curtain looking for a burglar, on the other side of a curtain Ramon was loading his .38 caliber revolver, sure he was hearing burglars from his side of the divider.  Vargas shot his pistol through the curtain striking officer Thomas in the head. Offer Thomas fought for his life for nearly eight hours, but succumbed to his wounds and died at 7:30 on the morning of Sept. 24, 1953.  Vargas went before a judge and was charged with violating a section of the Deadly Weapons Control Act which made it a crime for an alien to posses a pistol.

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Officer Denny Delmar Shannon

EOW - Monday, April 12, 1954

Officer Denny Shannon was killed in an automobile accident during a high-speed vehicle pursuit.

The Madera Police Department is remembering the service and sacrifice of Officer Denny Shannon this month as he was killed in the line of duty on April 12, 1954. Officer Shannon was involved in a traffic accident during a vehicle pursuit and succumbed to his injuries. The Department members will be wearing the black band for the month of April and the Department’s flags will be flown at half-staff. Officer Shannon is memorialized on the County’s Law Enforcement Memorial located in Courthouse Park and at the National Law Enforcement Memorial in Washington DC. We thank all fallen Officers for their service.


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