Officer Bailey was a veteran of the California National Guard and had just returned from serving a tour of duty in Iraq during the War on Terrorism. He had served with the California Highway Patrol for 10 years, and was assigned to the Rancho Cucamonga office.
Officer Bailey was struck and killed by a drunk driver while conducting a traffic stop on I-15 in Hesperia.
He had approached the stopped vehicle on the passenger side to speak with the driver. As he did so, another vehicle traveled onto the shoulder at a high rate of speed and struck Officer Bailey's motorcycle, the stopped vehicle, and the officer.
|From San Bernardino Sun sbsun.com
CHP officer memorialized
Mark Petix, Staff Writer
San Bernardino County Sun
Article Launched:08/08/2007 12:00:00 AM PDT
RANCHO CUCAMONGA - Loyal friend. Loving husband and father. A true "soldier of the law."
The drunken driver who killed him was sentenced to 10 years in prison.
Four days later, on Tuesday, California Highway Patrol motorcycle officer Gregory John Bailey was honored with a memorial at the station that was his second home.
More than 100 people gathered at the CHP station in Rancho Cucamonga to remember Bailey, who was killed during a High Desert traffic stop in February 2006.
With his parents, widow Teresa Bailey and four young children looking on, friends and colleagues spoke of the dedicated officer and Iraq War veteran who made the ultimate sacrifice.
CHP Capt. Lynne Jones, commander of the Rancho Cucamonga area, fought back tears as she spoke of the love and support the community has shown to the Bailey family.
She also honored the courage shown daily by officers like Bailey.
"Every day brings unknown dangers," Jones said. "We are grieving for a friend and carrying on. Even in our sorrow, we can celebrate that legacy today.
"It was a life lived honorably and a sacrifice made knowingly and willingly."
A car driven by Domingo Esqueda slammed into Bailey's motorcycle as he conducted a traffic stop on the 15 Freeway near Oak Hill Road as he was on his way home to Adelanto.
Bailey died at Arrowhead Regional Medical Center in Colton.
Esqueda, now 21, pleaded guilty to one count of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated.
CHP Commissioner Mike Brown said that all too often "we lose a good soldier.
"In this case, we lost John. And they will never forget. ... He will be remembered forever here at the Rancho Cucamonga office."
State Sen. Bob Dutton, R-Rancho Cucamonga, presented Teresa Bailey with a resolution honoring her late husband.
"I want to thank you ... for everything John did and stood for," he said.
Mike Hootman, Gregory Bailey's close friend and fellow CHP motorcycle officer, presented Teresa Bailey with her husband's helmet, which sat in a glass case near the flag that had been draped over his locker at the station.
"They have become my rock and they have become my support," Hootman said. "I have never known anyone as amazing as Teresa Bailey."
Then Teresa Bailey, who will be moving with her two sons and two daughters to Michigan, thanked everyone for the support and love they have shown her family in the 18 months since her husband died.
"To my CHP family, there are no words," she said. "He is so very proud of you. Please remember John with joy and laughter."
Members of Bailey's California National Guard unit led CHP officers in a final salute.
Then the widow, her children and Bailey's parents, Leonard and LaVonne, walked slowly to the flagpole, where the memorial sits.
Teresa Bailey helped remove the cloth covering the memorial and lifted up her youngest son, Dylan, so he could see it.
"Killed in the line of duty by an impaired driver," the memorial reads in part.
"He was a soldier of the law and will be forever missed. His memory will live within all who knew him."
|From California Association of Highway patrolmen thecahp.org
Saying Farewell to Officer Bailey
by Officer Ron Cohan, CAHP Director, Dist 4
March 09, 2006
A large crowd said a sad goodbye to CHP Officer Gregory John Bailey, I.D. 14664, the 209th CHP Officer to give up his life in the line-of-duty. He was “Greg” to his family and “John” to everyone else. John’s dedication was demonstrated the night he was killed. He was riding his departmental motorcycle home, after his shift when he observed a possible impaired driver and made a stop. He could have simply looked the other way, but his dedication to public safety would not allow that. While making that stop, the reckless actions of a 20-year old alleged drunken driver, whose blood alcohol content was more than twice the legal limit, took John from those who loved him, cared about him and depended on him.
On Friday, March 3, 2006, those closest to Gregory John Bailey gathered at The Rock church in San Bernardino. They were surrounded by those who did not have the privilege of knowing John, but wanted to support his family, friends and co-workers.
After graduating from high school in 1987, John signed up for the Army. Following basic training he was stationed in Germany as a helicopter mechanic and later as a crew chief. After returning to the U.S., John met Teresa and they later married. John left the Army in 1992 and worked briefly as a civilian mechanic before entering the CHP Academy in November 1995. While he was still at the Academy, Teresa gave birth to Hannah, their first-born. After Academy graduation John was assigned to the Barstow Area. John and Teresa later had three more children, Megan, Jared and Dylan. Transferring to the Rancho Cucamonga Area, he was successful in securing a motorcycle assignment. John continued to serve the military as a member of the California National Guard, most recently assigned to 1st of 140th Aviation Battalion at Los Alamitos as a Sergeant 1st Class. He was deployed to Iraq for a year, safely returning in November 2005.
During the funeral, Cliff Bemis sang “The Badge of the CHP,” and Officer/Paramedic Ellen Spurlock, I.D. 12393, Inland Division Air Operations (H-80), sang “If I Had Only Known” by Reba McEntire. (“If I had only known, it was our last walk in the rain. If I had only known I'd never hear your voice again, I'd memorize each thing you ever said...”)
Speakers included CHP Commissioner Mike Brown; California National Guard Major General William Wade, II; CHP Inland Division Chief John Fogerty; and Captain Lynn Jones, Rancho Cucamonga Area Commander. John’s friends and family then spoke; Mike Walker was John's friend since their days in the Army. Walker talked about John enjoying “everything cowboy,” pointing out that John sent his western shirts to be dry-cleaned and always requested plenty of starch. John’s cowboy boots and hats were handmade. CHP Officer Michael Hootman, I.D. 11364, Rancho Cucamonga Area, spoke about how much he had enjoyed his long motorcycle rides with John. Jen Visboll and her husband both met John when they were all stationed in Germany. She excitably spoke about John’s “Animal House” style parties in the barracks that included “toga” parties. Aimee Bailey, John’s little sister, reminded everyone her family knew him as Greg – not John. Aimee talked about playing with Greg when they were young — playing school, boxing (usually resulting in someone getting a bloody nose), Greg chasing her with bugs, etc. She remembered when Greg was eight years old; he rode his bicycle into the driveway holding a four-foot marijuana plant. He told his mother he found it in a neighbor’s yard, knew what it was and was taking it to the burn barrel. The service ended with a prayer offered by The Rock’s Dr. Hendrick Becker.
Following the church service, all assembled in the courtyard. Los Angeles City Fire Department Firefighter/Paramedic John A. Keys played the bagpipes dressed in traditional Scottish clothing. Keys walked in front of John’s casket as the honor guard detail and pallbearers moved it to the church’s courtyard. The rifle detail presented a 21-gun salute, "Taps" was played on two bugles and there were two helicopter “flyovers,” one law enforcement and one military. Then the American flag draping Officer Bailey’s casket was folded and presented. A formal motorcycle detail escorted the hearse as it drove under the fire truck ladders displaying the American flag (San Bernardino City & San Manuel Fire Departments). The interment was private.
|From: Source Unknown.
Sunday, February 26, 2006
Army National Guard Gregory John Bailey
Remember Our Heroes
Army National Guard Gregory John Bailey, 36, Adelanto, California
HESPERIA, Calif. -- A California Highway Patrol officer was killed when he was hit by an alleged drunk driver while trying to pull over another drunk driving suspect, authorities said.
Motorcycle officer Gregory John Bailey, 36, was killed on Interstate 15 near State Highway 395 in Hesperia, about 80 miles east of Los Angeles shortly after 10:30 p.m. Saturday.
He was the sixth CHP officer killed in the line of duty in the last five months.
"We have talked about this way too often here recently and now we mourn the death of officer John Bailey," CHP Commissioner Mike Brown said at a news conference. "Never in the history of the Highway Patrol have we seen this type of tragedy, with the number of events that we have seen in this short period of time."
A 10-year veteran of the Highway Patrol, Bailey had been back on duty for just a few months after serving for 14 months in Iraq with the Army National Guard, where he served as a unit maintenance supervisor for Army Blackhawk helicopter crews.
"The California Highway Patrol has lost another family member in what has been a tragic few months," Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said in a statement.
In the most recent CHP death, 36-year-old officer Earl Scott was fatally shot during a routine traffic stop on Feb. 17 near Modesto.
Authorities said Bailey was hit by Domingo Esqueda, 20, who had been driving on the shoulder. His car struck Bailey, sending his motorcycle into traffic and Esqueda's vehicle struck the car that the officer had pulled over, said CHP Sgt. Michael Collins.
The driver of the stationary car, 52-year-old Francisco Trujillo, suffered moderate injuries and was airlifted to a hospital. Bailey also was taken to the hospital where he died.
Esqueda was booked on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter and felony DUI.
Bailey was born in Ann Arbor, MI on June 17, 1969. His family moved to Thurmont, Maryland and he graduated from Catoctin High School in 1987. John joined the Army in 1987 and served as a helicopter crew chief for 6 years in Germany and Ft. Irwin, CA. John joined the California Highway Patrol in 1995 and initially assigned to the Barstow, CA station. In 2000 he transferred to the Rancho Cucamongo station and began riding CHP motorcycles. He enjoyed his military and highway patrol careers very much and was proud to serve his community and his country. John is survived by his loving wife of 14 yrs, and four children.