Pembroke Pines, FL – Pembroke Pines Police Department (PPPD) Officer Charles “Charlie” Herring died in the line of duty on Thursday after a falling piece of a palm tree knocked him off of his motorcycle.
The 54-year-old officer was riding his police motorcycle southbound on Northwest 184th Avenue at approximately 11:30 a.m. on Feb. 9 when a dislodged palm frond fell on him from above, WPLG reported.
The falling debris caused Officer Herring to lose control of the motorcycle, and he was ejected from the bike during the ensuing crash.
Officer Herring was rushed to Memorial Regional Hospital in Hollywood, where he succumbed to his traumatic injuries, WPLG reported.
The PPPD confirmed his death in a press release later that day.
“It is with heavy hearts and great sadness that we announce the untimely death of Pembroke Pines Police Officer Charles ‘Charlie’ Herring,” the department said. “Officer Herring succumbed to his injuries despite all lifesaving efforts from fellow officers and emergency medical professionals.”
Officer Herring, a U.S. Army veteran, served as a Starke Police Department officer for three years prior to joining the PPPD in 2001.
He dedicated his life to public service, the police department said.
“Officer Charles Herring paid the ultimate sacrifice doing what he loved, serving and protecting others,” the PPPD said. “He will be missed by all who knew and loved him.”
A procession of dozens of law enforcement vehicles escorted the fallen officer’s body from the hospital to the medical examiner’s office, WPLG reported.
PPPD Chief Kipp Shimpeno said Officer Herring is the first Pembroke Pines police officer to die in the line of duty.
“A beloved father, he was a personal friend of mine,” Chief Shimpeno told reporters. “Charlie’s touched pretty much every person in this agency and so many people in the community. It’s definitely going to take some time and a lot of togetherness to get through this.”
Officer Herring leaves behind his four children, WSVN reported.
Earlier today, Officer Charles “Charlie” Herring was involved in a tragic accident after a piece of debris fell from a tree, striking him and causing him to fall from his motorcycle. Despite all live-saving efforts, he tragically passed away as a result of his injuries. 1/ pic.twitter.com/AWt4N1isCg
— Pembroke Pines PD (@PPinesPD) February 10, 2023
— Pembroke Pines PD (@PPinesPD) February 9, 2023
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Pembroke Pines Police Department Officer Charles “Charlie” Herring, both blood and blue. Thank you for your service.
Rest easy, hero. We’ll hold the line from here.