Comanche County, OK – Lawton Police Department (LPD) Sergeant C.H. Brazzel died in a single-vehicle crash on Monday.
The 70-year-old police sergeant was driving a truck and trailer northbound on SE 165th at approximately 11 a.m., when the vehicle went off the roadway near Woodlawn Road for an unknown reason, TNN reported.
The truck crashed through multiple fences and a field before it collided with numerous trees, according to The Lawton Constitution.
Sgt. Brazzel was pronounced dead at the scene, TNN reported.
Comanche County Sheriff Kenny Stradley, who had known the beloved sergeant for over 45 years, was among those who carried his body from the wreckage, The Lawton Constitution reported.
“It still doesn’t seem real,” Sheriff Stradley told the paper. “He was a great friend. There’s friends and then there’s friends you can always depend on. He was an above-and-beyond good guy.”
Sgt. Brazzel was a lifelong resident of Lawton, and his death has been devastating for the entire community.
“With heavy hearts and deepest sympathies, the City of Lawton and Lawton Police Department mourn the passing of Sgt. C.H. Brazzel…alongside our entire community,” city officials said in a press release. “With a law enforcement career spanning several decades, Sgt. Brazzel was a model officer and honorable public servant for the Lawton Fort Sill community.”
He had been serving the LPD since the 1970s, TNN reported.
After high school, Sgt. Brazzel enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps, serving from December of 1967 until January of 1970, according to his obituary.
He earned a criminal justice degree at Cameron College before he joined the LPD in October of 1974, and remained with the department for over 45 years.
“He helped any way, anyone and anytime that he could,” Lawton Police Chief James Smith said in the joint press release. “He was truly one of the best and most dedicated officers that the Lawton Police Department was privileged to have serve.”
His longtime friend, Ross Hankins, said that Sgt. Brazzel “never met a stranger,” TNN reported.
“He made everybody feel like you were his best friend,” Hankins said. “And that’s just how it was.”
Former Lawton Fire Marshal Larry Odom described Sgt. Brazzel as “the rock of Lawton.”
“He’s a legend, he’s been here forever,” Lawton Police Sergeant David Schucker told TNN. “Funny thing is, as an officer, one thing you always heard no matter what when working the streets if you stopped somebody, they would say I know C.H. Brazzel.”
“The bad guys even trusted him,” Sgt. Schucker added. “So, if you needed somebody, CH could go get him, and have him turn himself in no problems. He will be greatly missed. He was a great training officer when I was younger and he was a great to work with even as an older man.”
Sgt. Brazzel leaves behind his wife, Sandy, his daughters, Jenifer and Lara, and his stepchildren, Rick, Shannon, Samantha, and Rebecca, according to his obituary.
He is also survived by 11 grandchildren, his siblings, his extended family members, and many friends.
Sgt. Brazzel will be laid to rest on Saturday.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Lawton Police Department Sergeant C.H. Brazzel, both blood and blue. Thank you for your service.
Rest easy, hero. We’ll hold the line from here.