Retired long time Sheriff of Alameda County, Charles C. Plummer, passed away in his home on Sunday, March 4, 2018, at the age of 87. Members of his immediate family report his passing was peaceful. Charles C. Plummer is now resting along with his wife, Norma, who passed away in June 2017. He is survived by his daughter, Pamela Rossi (Gale), sons Larry (Lauren) and Chris (Yvonne), eight grandchildren, along with five great grandchildren.
Charles C. Plummer, a native of Fort Bragg, California, joined the Berkeley Police Department in 1952 after a chance meeting with a California Highway patrolman who told him he would make an excellent police officer. Charles Plummer rose through the ranks of the Berkeley Police Department to become Acting Chief. In 1976, Plummer was appointed Chief of Police for the city of Hayward where he served 10 years before being elected the 21st Sheriff of Alameda County in 1986. Sheriff Plummer served as the Sheriff for 20 years before retiring in 2007 with an amazing 54 years of dedicated law enforcement service.
Known as a no nonsense lawman, Plummer implemented his “Cardinal Sins” code of conduct to every person under his command which were: no acceptance of any gratuities; no making any disparaging racial or ethnic remarks; no official lies or untruthfulness will be accepted in any official capacity; the use of any illegal drugs was prohibited; and prohibited all staff from engaging in any form of sexual harassment. Any person found to have violated any of these “Cardinal Sins” would be terminated. Many agencies throughout the country implemented similar rules based on his principles. To this day, Sheriff Plummer’s “Cardinal Sins” are read, signed and agreed to by every member of the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office.
Sheriff Plummer was instrumental in the advancement of law enforcement professionalism in Alameda County, and far beyond. He served as President of the California State Sheriffs’ Association and earned five coveted national accreditations to ensure our Agency was transparent, honorable, trustworthy and loyal to the citizens of Alameda County. These accreditations guaranteed the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office would continually use the Nation’s best practices for law enforcement.
Members of Alameda County were also saddened by his death. Susan Muranishi, County Administrator of the County stated, “Sheriff Plummer – icon and legend — was a respected leader, mentor, colleague and friend to many, and will be remembered with fond memories and appreciation.” President of the Board of Supervisors, Wilma Chan, District 3 stated, “Charlie was the best sheriff we will ever see, law enforcement with compassion and humor. He also was so kind and attentive to me and all Board members. I am sure he will continue to watch and protect from above!” Supervisor Valle, Vice President of the Board of Supervisors, District 2 stated, “Charlie was a man who spoke eloquently and in plain English at the same time. He was one of a kind. I am so sorry to hear of his passing away.”
Supervisor Scott Haggerty, District 1 stated, “Charlie was strong on law and order and also very passionate about serving the needs of those incarcerated. He touched many lives and had a hand in laying a firm foundation at the Sheriff’s Office that’s still in place today. I’m deeply grateful for his mentorship when I first came to the Board of Supervisors. I, along with my fellow board members and the citizens of Alameda County, owe him a debt of gratitude for his entire body of work and years of dedicated of service.” Supervisor Nate Miley, District 4 stated, “I am so sorry to hear of his passing away. Charlie was a fantastic person and quite a Sheriff, bigger than life! May his soul rest in peace of the Lord! We were all enriched by Sheriff Plummer. Please give my sympathy to his family.”
Supervisor Keith Carson, District 5 stated, “Charles Plummer will be missed by all! He lives on in all of the lives he touched!! He was always honest and direct. He left Alameda County a much better place in which to live. While tough on those who broke the law, he believed in rehabilitation. He had a big heart, and played a major role in my improved understanding of real public safety! A devout believer in God, he has now joined his wife with the angels! Charlie leaves footprints for others to follow in the sand. God bless.”
Undersheriff Richard T. Lucia stated, “Charles Plummer, former Sheriff and my mentor and friend, passed away at 5:10 p.m. today (Sunday, March 4, 2018). Please pray for his soul if it fits with your religious beliefs, or simply think of the wonderful man he was and reflect on your past interactions with him.”
Sheriff Gregory J. Ahern is deeply saddened by the passing of Sheriff Plummer. Sheriff Ahern said, “Today we mourn the loss of an American Hero. Sheriff Plummer was one of the most dedicated and respected law enforcement leaders in our Nation. He helped countless people throughout his lifetime and was a great mentor to me and many of my staff. He will be missed, but his legacy will live on in all of us who work here.”
At the request of Charles C. Plummer, a very private ceremony will be planned for immediate family and close friends. If you wish to make a donation in honor of Charles C. Plummer, the family requests donations be mailed to either:
the 100 Club, 767 Brannan Place, Concord, CA 94518, or Salvation Army Hayward Corps, 430 A Street, Hayward, CA 94541.
Please write in the check memo “In memory of Charles C. Plummer.”
Cards may be mailed to: Plummer Family, c/o Undersheriff Rich Lucia, 1401 Lakeside Drive, 12th Floor, Oakland, CA 94612.”
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