Michael Alan Jeu

Dermott, Chicot County, Arkansas, USA
Death 7 Apr 1998 (aged 46)
North Little Rock, Pulaski County, Arkansas, USA
Burial Cremated, Ashes given to family or friend
Memorial ID 138120718 · View Source
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Michael Alan Jeu
Retired policeman, 46, dies of cancer

By Kitty Chism

One North Little Rock police sergeant on the color guard called it the "toughest funeral I've ever don," a farewell to a retired officer respected for his investigative prowess as well as his SWAT team savvy, his eloquence at the podium and heart for his community and young family, who died after a long battle with lung cancer Tuesday, April 7, at age 46.

Hundreds of law enforcement officers from around the state and region packed the Fellowship Bible Church last Friday to honor Michael Alan Jeu, the first Asian officer in the North Little Rock Police Department and the first firearms instructor for the Department of Veteran's Affairs' training institute, for his energy and drive, distinguished marksmanship and devotion to police work and people.

"He saw police work as helping people," said his wife of 14 years, Diane Jeu. "He love North Little Rock, and he saw this as a way to give back to his community."

The outgoing oldest son of a businessman turned pipe fitter and community activist, the late Jack Jeu, Sgt. Jeu was a graduate of North Little Rock High School who joined the police force after trying a number of other jobs, including railroad work, in his early 20s.

He joined the force in 1975 when the department had only 80 officers, training at the academy in Camden, where he quickly made a name for himself for his expert pistol shooting.

Three years later, he would be named Policeman of the Year by the North Little Rock Jaycees and he would move quickly from a patrolman assigned to the streets of Levy to SWAT team member, Honor Guard member, 1988 gold medal Pistol Team leader and sergeant detective assigned to crimes against people.

Colleagues and family members say he was a dogged investigator who would not give up no matter the hours, and the pride of his career were the successful arrests and convictions in the Stacey Rae Erickson murder case and the Johnnie Hubbert abuse case.

He also willing appeared on the America's Most Wanted program that led to the arrest and conviction of a man who had killed an Asian police officer in Springdale.

"Mike was a man of action," said Sgt. Jim Scott. "We spent three days one time working on a case without food or rest...He passed his drive and energy on to his troops. He kept us very focused. He was a mentor."

Others speak of his marksmanship, a hobby that took him to the shooting range many hours a week, especially when he was preparing for competition, and distinguished him in the FBI National Academy's 163rd session, where he was the only officer in history to shoot 100 percent twice in the revolver and pistol "Possibles Club."

He retired in 1995 after 20 years and was hired as the firearms instructor at the national training institute at Fort Roots shortly after the VA decided to arm its hospital security police. He also founded his own hand gun training and home security business, Shooters Inc.

His time away from work was devoted to family, his first marriage having ended in divorce and with the custody of son Jon who shared his interest in police work and joined the force himself three years ago.

"He took me everywhere with him," Jon recalled. "Taught me how to shoot when I was 5 years old...Took me duck hunting and bass fishing...That's when we really got to talk to each other."

He met his wife Diane when he pulled her over for speeding through the McCain Mall parking lot one day and friends would later fix them up on a blind date, and theirs was a marriage of caring support for one another and their three children, the others ages 11 and 8.

"There was never a dull moment in our house. We were always talking, laughing, wrestling or planning our next adventure," Jon said.

"Knowing near the end that he was losing his battle with cancer, Sgt. Jeu wrote each one of his family members a person letter recounting special memories of each of them to hold as a memory of him, his wife said.

More memories surfaced at the memorial service last Friday, she said, when one person after another in the community shared moments of when he had touched their lives, from the gentleness he had used to tell a mother she had lost her son in a car accident to the baby he delivered in the back of his squad car to the soft spot he had showed for the winos he encounted along the way.

But his final display of quiet courage was the way he approached the disease that was consuming him, she noted.

"He was awesome, he simply would not give up," she said, "Days before he died he would take our 11-year-old hunting so he would have that memory...take our little daughter to the Starlite Diner on a date" so they could have that visiting time.

"He talked at our church about the positive effect of his cancer, how it had not been a test as much as an affirmation of his faith. He was never bitter or angry, never asked 'Why me?'"

Besides his wife and children Jon, Spencer and Casey, he is survived by his daughter-in-law, Jennifer Jeu, grandson, Austin Jeu; mother, May Jeu; brother, Richard C. Jeu; and sister, Teresa Huckabay, all of North Little Rock.

The family requests that memorials be made to the Fellowship Bible Church, #1 52nd Place, North Little Rock.

The Times - Apr. 16, 1998

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  • Created by: L A McKenzie
  • Added: 31 Oct 2014
  • Find A Grave Memorial 138120718
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Michael Alan Jeu (23 Aug 1951–7 Apr 1998), Find A Grave Memorial no. 138120718, ; Maintained by L A McKenzie (contributor 48137247) Cremated, Ashes given to family or friend.