Community members gather to remember Southport former mayor and police chief Jerry Dove

SOUTHPORT, NC (WWAY) — Many community members gathered at Southport Baptist Church on Tuesday to remember former Southport mayor and police chief Jerry Dove.

Jerry Dove had more than five decades of public service. Prior to his leadership roles in the city of Southport. He served in U.S. Army Reserve, and served as a police officer in the Air Force. He also was a state highway patrol trooper.

Dove later joined the Southport Police Department as an officer and K-9 handler. He became the chief of police in 2003, and served for twelve years. After that, Dove served two consecutive terms as Southport mayor, from 2015 to 2018.

Community members at today’s funeral say they are appreciative of Dove’s service.

“He got familiar with all of his ‘people’, as he called us his people, and it was just great to have him here as a chief of police, and a mayor. He did a wonderful job as a mayor, and he’s going to be missed,” said Donna Moore, Southport resident.

“He covered so many spectrums of emergency services and leadership, with being a highway patrolman, a police officer, a chief of police, a mayor, and he touched so many in the community. His legacy is still going on today,” said Charles Drew, Southport fire chief.

“One thing he taught us is, – again one of our motto’s at the police department, ‘service above self’, and he certainly lived that. So, he’s just a legacy and a role model to me for that very thing,” said Todd Coring, Southport police chief.

Flags in the City of Southport are at half-staff, to honor and remember Dove.

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