Deputy Remembered One Year After His Death

By Lindsay Hood
|  Monday, Feb 28, 2011  |  Updated 2:15 PM PDT
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Deputy Remembered One Year After His Death

NBC San Diego

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A Deputy who lost his life while protecting the lives of others -- is remembered.

“A year ago, we lost a larger than life figure… who was really loved by everyone who knew him,” said Sheriff Bill Gore. “Especially his colleagues in Santee.”

A special dedication ceremony was held at the William B. Kolender Sheriff's Museum in Old Town, to remember Sheriff's Deputy Ken Collier on Monday, one year after his death.

“His spirit was the type of spirit, positive spirit that would fill any room that he was in. His colleagues in Santee described him as the ultimate partner who always had your back,” said Sheriff Gore.

Sheriff Gore accompanied Collier's fiancée, family, and friends to the Gallery of Honor, where they placed a photo of Collier on the wall. The wall holds the photos of all San Diego Sheriff's deputies who were killed in the line of duty.

Collier, 39, was killed in a crash, while chasing a drunk driver going the wrong way on Highway 52 in Santee on February 28, 2010. Collier was heading west on state Route 52 from Santee when he spotted the driver coming at him. Collier turned around.

Collier tried to overtake the driver when his Ford Expedition struck part of the cement bridge, rolled several hundred feet and came to a rest in a deep ravine.

“On that foggy, Sunday morning out on highway 52, he had the public’s back when he immediately turned and decided to pursue a wrong way driver. That act cost him, ultimately, to pay the ultimate sacrifice for the people of this county,” said Sheriff Gore.

The alleged drunk driver Jose Jasso Lopez, 22, was charged with vehicular manslaughter and drunken driving.

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