• 66°

Officer Jeffries honored

Officer Percy Jeffries had a quick smile.

He was warm and friendly man – although he could be tough when the situation demanded – who touched a lot of lives during his six years with the Suffolk Police Department.

Jeffries, 47, was found dead in his Virginia Beach home last Sunday.

His funeral is at 11 a.m. today at the Rock Church, 640 Kempsville Road, with burial to follow in the Albert G. Horton Jr. Memorial Veterans’ Cemetery.

Jeffries is survived by his wife, Annette, and three children.

“He was an unforgettable person … which makes the loss that much greater,” said Sgt. Margaret Earls. “He was a friend to all, the kind of person who was more concerned about you and your needs than his own.

“He was able to relate to everyone … regardless of their circumstances and he developed a rapport with people. He was loved by all.”

Jeffries won the department’s community service award in March because he had been stopping by to check on Edna Wilson, an 88-year-old woman without family in the area, several times a week for the past couple of years.

Jeffries’ death has “devastated” officers, Earls said. Despite the growth in the city in recent years, the police force is still small enough that officers build strong friendships through work.

“It’s hard to realize that someone so well loved is no longer here,” Earls said.

Officers have set up a memorial fund for Jeffries’ family through SuffolkFirst Bank. Anyone interested in making a contribution can take it there.

Police stressed that the fund through the bank is the only authorized fundraiser. The city has received reports of people collecting money in parking lots for the Jeffries’ family, said city spokeswoman Debbie George. Police believe those efforts are fraudulent and encouraged people to donate through reliable sources.