Some people never met Jeremy Charron. Some knew him well. The following will tell about this unique young man, who served his country and then gave his life in the performance of his duties as a police officer protecting others.
Jeremy Todd Charron was born on March 18, 1973. Always goal oriented, he set his sights on a career in law enforcement while still a youngster in school and then directed his life toward that goal. Nicknamed “CRASH”, he always wanted to be a Marine and a NH State Trooper. A role model and born leader, he graduated President of his high school class in 1992, then joined the United States Marine Corps, where he proudly served 4 years on active duty.
Shortly after his discharge, it was part-time employment as a police officer with the Epsom Police Department. There, he wore his police uniform equally as proud as he wore his military dress blues.
Jeremy excelled in this position, always striving to be the best and feeling second place was never good enough. He used to say “Winning isn’t everything, It’s the ONLY thing”! His attitude and strong work ethic paid off, as he was selected from a field of applicants to attend the New Hampshire Police Academy for certification as a full-time police officer, graduating on July 11, 1997.
On Saturday night, August 23, 1997 Officer Jeremy Charron began his assigned midnight shift commencing at 2300 hours. That evening’s patrol was routine and relatively uneventful. However, at approximately 0500 hours on the morning of August 24th, Jeremy passed by an area commonly known as the “Short Falls Swimming Hole” which is off limits to persons after 2100 hours. He noticed a vehicle parked at that location with two occupants in it that appeared to be sleeping.
Conforming to procedure, he checked the subjects in the vehicle and obtained identification from the owner/operator, whom he had exit the vehicle. An altercation took place, in which Officer Charron was fired upon and struck 3 times in the body. Two of the rounds fired were stopped by body armor, while the third entered the left side of his body, which was not protected. Although mortally wounded, Officer Charron returned fire striking the fleeing vehicle eight times as it sped from the scene. Finally, succumbing to the fatal wound, he collapsed to the ground.
The exemplary performance Officer Charron displayed is what all officers strive for, as he performed courageously in a situation that demanded actions well above and beyond the call of duty while engaged in an actual confrontation with an armed and dangerous adversary.
This would be the final goal Jeremy Charron would be permitted to attain before his life was tragically taken from him in the early morning hours on August 24, 1997. That day, a richly vibrant life, filled with vitality, determination, and good humor, was senselessly cut short. What one could describe as a routine traffic stop, resulted in the end of what we all believed would be a long and prosperous life and promising career.
A person like Jeremy Charron only comes around once in anyone’s lifetime. Within the police department, his leadership qualities rapidly achieved him the position of President of their Association. Highly motivated, he was the department’s leading self-initiated police officer. Confident of his ability, he excelled in any endeavor and when called upon to make a decision, he was firm, but fair.
Jeremy affected the lives of anyone he came in contact with. Whether it was the school children that looked up to him as he strolled the halls during classes to ensure good behavior. The disabled motorist who was politely assisted or the accident victim comforted as his injuries were tended to. Maybe it was the runaway juvenile who was compassionately lectured about the importance of staying home and getting a good education. Or perhaps the young girls who worked at the local ice cream stand who could rely on his ever-present figure of security at closing time. He always seemed to leave an impression.
What remains in Epsom for this police officer is a memorial stone placed outside the police station. It is symbolic of Jeremy Charron who stood like a rock, and always gave the impression he was chiseled from stone. It is appropriately placed between the American flag, flown for the country he proudly served as a true patriot in the United States Marine Corps, and the New Hampshire flag, flown for the State he proudly served as a police officer for the Town of Epsom.
Jeremy gave his life protecting ours, so we could live in safety and security. He may be gone now, but not forgotten. Certainly not by his mother and father or brothers and sisters. Certainly not by the grateful community who bid him a hero’s farewell. And most certainly not by the men and women in uniform he was so proud to call his comrades. His death has not been in vain, as these officers continue to protect and serve, not only in cities and municipalities, but the State of New Hampshire, the entire Country, and around the World. Memorial Trust Funds, Blood Drives, and Scholarships are just a few of the means in place that are carrying on his legacy.
We must remember that those we hold most dear, never truly leave us. They live on in the kindness they showed, the comfort they shared, and the love they brought into our lives. One thing that is certain for those who knew Jeremy Charron during his brief life on earth, is how richly blessed we are.
It is important now, especially after the terrible tragedy that befell our country on September 11, 2001 to take time to say thanks to all those men and women who walk in harms way every day for us. The same way Jeremy so willingly walked, and remember how he, and they, gave the Supreme, Ultimate, Sacrifice, and how proud they were to be Americans.
He proudly served his country and proudly served the citizens of the State of New Hampshire. He represented the finest example of a Law Enforcement Officer, A United States Marine, and above all an American.
And that is why we are so proud to represent this American Legion Post that recognizes Jeremy Charron, Law Enforcement Officers and Veterans past and present. We can’t think of a more fitting honor and tribute than to have this American Legion Post named in his honor. We also sure Jeremy is smiling down upon us now and is equally proud.
Several articles have been written about our namesake, Jeremy Todd Charron. Please click on the links below to read more about him.
Life and Death of Jeremy Charron – The above text in PDF
Medal of Honor Citation – PDF version
A Family Honor for Jeremy – PDF version