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Photo from Huntsville PD

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Man In Blue

A Tribute To A True Huntsville Hero, Officer Garrett Crumby

The city of Huntsville called him the smiling cop. "My son had a calling to serve and protect the community. And he did it well. He was born for public service," says Janet Sherman, Officer Garrett Crumby's mother. 

Officer Crumby was tragically killed in the line of duty March 28. The outpouring of support from the Huntsville community and communities all over Alabama and beyond was unlike anything many have seen. The 12 mile long funeral procession from Huntsville to Tuscaloosa and series of vigils and events to honor Officer Crumby are a testament that when tragedy strikes, this community mourns together.

Since he was a teenager, Garrett was interested in civil service. He joined the local volunteer fire department’s junior firefighter program and spent years training under Englewood-Hulls Fire Department, earning multiple EMT certifications. His EMT skills translated well as a police officer. 

His sister Jennifer Crumby says, "We’ve heard so many fellow officers talk about how he was the first to run through the door when called. He wasn’t scared of anything (except ghosts). One officer recalled being attacked and swears Garrett appeared out of nowhere to tackle the suspect."

Garrett was known as a great listener. Jennifer remarks, "He honestly could've been a therapist. People who needed reassurance or a helping hand, Garrett was always willing to be that guy. We’ve even heard a few stories about how he saved lives in dangerous situations." She continues, "We wonder every day if he had any clue how many people appreciated his selflessness and kindness."

His sister Casey Allison laughs, "Garrett was a trickster. Anything for a laugh. And as the only boy, he usually had the best toys. He got us into more trouble than we care to remember." She adds, "We were all typically shy, but not Garrett. He always made friends everywhere he went, a trait that he kept as an adult." 

His sisters remember that he enjoyed building electronics, and as a teen he could build computers out of spare parts. Casey mentions, "Garrett liked working with his hands and learning how things were made. He even started a weather club in elementary school and enjoyed giving forecasts over the morning announcements, which lead to a storm chasing hobby in his teens."

Janet says, "He had little fear. As a teenager, he loved chasing storms, somehow trusting he would be able to see the tornado without being caught up in it."

"One time he pulled over Santa! He then sent us all a selfie of him and Santa," Casey loves this memory.

Garrett never met an animal he didn't like, often making friends on the police beat with strays and on purported “vicious dog” calls. Casey says, "Then he would send everyone pictures of the 'vicious dog' giving him kisses." 

The family continues to take grief one day at a time. Jennifer states, "We’ve experienced varying degrees of sadness, hopelessness and anger. It feels like he’s on vacation somewhere and we’re waiting for him to come back."

Garrett was a fighter and so his sisters are following his lead and will keep up his fight for all his fellow officers. The Crumby family believes, "Our communities need to better protect them and all of us from violent criminals."

The Officer Garrett Crumby Memorial Foundation, Inc. was recently established to promote awareness of flaws in our justice system and generate opportunities to amend laws to protect our men and women in blue. The family wants to honor Garrett and what was important to him - protecting others. As Casey says, "We know that every state in the country is dealing with a surge in crime, and so much is asked of our officer community to protect our communities amid weaknesses in the law that enable judges to continuously release the same offenders over and over. We want to focus on restricting judges’ ability to repeatedly release violent offenders. If stronger rules had been in place, we believe Garrett would still be here."

"Many people in the days following Garrett’s death told me my son was a hero." His mom continues, "I already knew. He always was mine."

Letter from Huntsville Police Chief Giles

The outpouring of love from our community was overwhelming following the death of Officer Garrett Crumby and critical wounding of Officer Albert Morin.

Our department has received so many cards, emails, text messages, phone calls and notes regarding the events of March 28. The love and support you’ve shown our officers, employees as well as their families underscores why this a wonderful community to live and work in.

Your support and prayers gave us strength through Officer Crumby’s funeral and graveside service. This continues to strengthen Officer Morin’s resolve to heal.

For those who lined the streets and overpasses from Mayfair Church of Christ along the route to Tuscaloosa, it was a heartwarming tribute to Officers Crumby and Morin and all first responders.

The sorrow in the wake of this senseless tragedy is felt deeply by our department as well as our community. Tragically, our officers were again reminded of the sacrifices their jobs require.

  • Photo from Huntsville PD