Charles Hefferon packed a lot of living in his fifty-five years. He was in public and national service and as a sportsman he reached the pinnacle of his chosen endeavour.
Charles was born in 1877, Bishop's Green, England. Charles was still quite young when he was immigrated to Canada and settled down in Brandon, Manitoba.
Prior to his contribution to public service, Charles also served for several years in the national service and answered Britain's call to arms in the Boer War. After that war Charles continued to live in South Africa. He was there ten years before moving on to Canada. He served again in the Great War and signed on with the Royal Canadian Dragoons.
Upon his return to Canada, Charles was acting chief of police in Dunnville before transferring to the Ontario Provincial Police. He worked on special assignments in Hamilton and then moved to motorcycle patrol with the Department of Highways in Brantford, Blenheim and in 1930 he arrived in Brampton just as the unit became part of the OPP.
In addition to military and police services, Charles was also an accomplished athlete. He ran middle and long distance and the British Empire deemed him to be one of the greats in marathon competition. Some of his many highlights as an athlete were his solid track reputation in South Africa where he won the one-mile and four-mile championships. In England he won the one-mile world professional championship and the English four-mile event and came in second in the British marathon. The biggest highlight of his athletic career was when he came in second place (silver medal) in the 1908 Olympiad in London.
Charles Hefferon was thought to have an excellent way of approaching the public so as to enforce the law without creating undue hardship on society. He had a great way of dealing with people.
On Thursday May 12, 1932, Charles Hefferon passed away at the age of fifty-five in a traffic accident. He tried to proceed through an intersection, sounded his siren but was hit by a motorist who later claimed he did not see the officer approaching. Charles lived until the next day but as a result of his injuries he never regained consciousness.
The motorist was charged with dangerous driving and released on $2,000.00 bail.
Charles was survived by his wife, a daughter and two sons.
Two years after his passing, one of Charles' sons began his career with the OPP and retired as a Sergeant Major from the Greater Toronto Area in 1972.