|Birth: ||Jul. 31, 1963|
|Death: ||Jun. 23, 2001|
POLICE OFFICER DONNA P. MAUZY
SAN DIEGO UNION -TRIBUNE JUNE 30, 2001
She was so entertaining and energetic, her supervisors would sometimes partner her with lethargic officers to keep them awake. Even though she was a cop who had to deal with the worst society has to offer, she wasn't above buying a meal for someone she had just arrested. San Diego police Officer Donna P. Mauzy was dedicated to her job. That's how mourners from throughout the state yesterday remembered Mauzy, 38, killed June 23, 2001, when her Jeep was struck by a suspected drunken driver on Interstate 8 in El Cajon as she was driving to work at the department's Central Division in Logan Heights.
"She could talk a crocodile into handcuffs," said police Chief David Bejarano in eulogizing the popular, 5-foot, 2-inch, 110-pound officer during services at USD's Immaculata Church.
More than 1,800 peace officers, families, friends and officials -- including San Diego Mayor Dick Murphy - were on hand to remember the officer who started her law enforcement career as a police dispatcher in the mid-1980s and became a cop in 1993, first in El Cajon and then in San Diego.
As Mauzy's flag-draped coffin was wheeled into the church, her daughter, Stephanie, 13, wearing her mother's police uniform jacket, sat in a front pew a few feet away. Stephanie clutched the shoulders of her father, Ralph, also a San Diego police officer, who had two tightly clenched floral arrangements in his hands. Donna Mauzy's son, Danny, 18, served as a pallbearer.
Law officers in dress uniforms -- with black tape covering their badges -- filled numerous pews. During the hourlong service, friends and officers shared fond memories. Laughter often mixed with tears. "Donna brought professionalism, compassion and concern to her work," said her pastor, Rev. Gil Gentile of the Queen of Angels Catholic Church in Alpine, who gave introductory rites. He said Mauzy paid particular care to the underdog, often helping the homeless in her spare time at St. Vincent de Paul Village.
She was known throughout the Police Department as a dynamic officer, despite her size. "She may have been small, but she delivered like she was 6 feet tall," said Sgt. Art Doherty. "She had much love and zest for life." She was so energetic, said Doherty, her supervisor, that he often would pair her with officers who were going through the motions to keep them awake on the graveyard shift.
Many remembered Mauzy for her kindness. "She was able to get tough street thugs eating out of the palm of her hand," said Doherty. "She killed them with kindness." Once, after arresting and handcuffing a man on a narcotics offense, Mauzy stopped at a fast-food restaurant on the way to jail where she learned the suspect had not eaten in three days. She bought the prisoner some food and, because he was handcuffed, she fed him.
After the service, some officers reflected on how Mauzy died. Debra Ann Culver, 38, the person accused in Mauzy's death, has pleaded not guilty to charges of vehicular manslaughter and felony driving while under the influence of alcohol. Authorities say Culver's blood-alcohol level was 0.19 percent - more than twice the 0.08 percent legal limit for driving." There is some anger and frustration here, especially when it hits close to home," said traffic division Sgt. Kevin Friedman, who supervises a drunken-driving enforcement team.
But yesterday, officers said, was not a day of bitterness. Mauzy's best friend, fellow Officer Peggy Anderson, offered a moving tribute in explaining how Mauzy went out of her way to care for her when she was ill. Breaking down at times, Anderson said, "Donna was always entertaining for everybody. She was happy and bubbly." Looking to the heavens, Anderson addressed Donna and said, "I'm sure you are entertaining up there right now."
Submitted by: Chuck Davis 47514069
San Diego County
Created by: KChaffeeB
Record added: Jul 18, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 55136109