On the afternoon of November 19, the California Highway Patrol suffered the line of duty loss of their third officer during 2003.
Officer Dean Beattie, 46 years old, a 24 year veteran of the CHP was operating his motorcycle on routine patrol when he collided with a slow moving truck. The officer suffered massive head injuries, was transported to Sharp Memorial Hospital where all efforts to save him failed.
CHP Commissioner Spike Helmick, who flew to San Diego, said “Beattie’s death was one of those tragic incidents that couldn’t be explained. He was a good rider, an experienced rider who spent much of his 24 year career in the San Diego area riding motors”.
Beattie became the third motor officer in the San Diego area to lose his life in the line of duty in recent months. Earlier in the year, San Diego P.D. Motor Officers Gerald Griffin and Terry Bennett had lost their lives. Veteran San Diego P.D. Motor Officer Tom Simonds, P.O.R.A.C. Memorial Committee Chairman, was especially touched by the losses, “Gerald Griffin and Terry Bennett were members of my unit, and Dean Beattie was a neighbor of mine in Ramona. Motor Officers enjoy a special camaraderie that transcends all others. When we lose one of our own it is truly like losing a member of our own family”.
Dean Edward Beattie was born in Alexandria, Virginia on August 16, 1957.
Upon graduation from high school, Dean chose to serve his country by joining the U.S. Marine Corps where his time in the service took him to Hawaii for a tour of duty. Upon receiving an Honorable Discharge from the military, Dean chose to continue on a career of public service. On November 19, 1979, 22 year old cadet Dean Beattie entered the California Highway Patrol Academy. His first duty assignment was the San Diego office. During his 24 year career Dean served in several offices, but always had a special bond with the San Diego area. his final transfer occurred in 2000, when he reported back to the San Diego area office.
Despite the stressful demands of life as a CHP officer, Dean never lost his sense of humor and love of the South where he grew up. Dean had recently purchased land in the hills of Tennessee where he planned to retire and frequently kidded about becoming a “Hillbilly”.
Dean’s two loves in life were Rosa, his wife of nearly six years, and their blended family. He was a loving father to Farrah, 19, Brett, 17, Cindy, 17, Annelise, 13, Amanda, 12, And Tawny, 10. Dean was a committed Christian who enjoyed his relationship with Jesus Christ. Dean and Rosa’s church, Calvary Chapel, Ramona, played a vital role in their lives where they were in charge of the church’s nursery. When not busy with church and community related activities, Dean enjoyed taking the family on camping trips.
Whether at home or at work, Dean’s constant smile, positive attitude, and vibrant sense of humor won him the love and respect not only of his family and peers, but of all who came in contact with him throughout the years. A loving father, devoted Christian, caring officer and friend, Dean Beattie provided a legacy of professionalism, humor, and love of life rarely matched and never surpassed.
On Monday morning, November 24, peace officers from a multitude of jurisdictions formed a motorcade leading from Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego to the Marantha Chapel in Rancho Bernardo, where several thousand family members, friends and peace officers had gathered to honor the memory of Dean Beattie.
Contributions to the Beattie family may be made through the San Diego office of the California Highway Patrol.