Adolfo Hernandez #4876
California Highway Patrolmen
Early National Latino Peace Officers Association (NLPOA) Member
Adolfo Hernandez was the first NLPOA member to die in the line of duty on June 27, 1975 in Fremont, California. Adolfo was the CHP (H-3) helicopter observer assigned to the San Jose Area. Officer Frederick W. Enright #7867(pilot) was flying northbound parallel to I 680 freeway between Milpitas and Oakland when the helicopter developed mechanical problems with the rotor, struck high power lines and crashed to the ground killing both officers instantaneously.
It is said, and I believe, that the mantel of a person is easily reflected in the way he or she lived his or her life. I met Adolfo when I was assigned to the San Jose CHP Area in 1969. We immediately developed a close relationship with him and his wife Genieve; later would come their daughter Lisa, who was born in 1971, my wife Frances and I became her Godparents, through Baptism, which made Adolfo and Genievie “Compadres” later, their son Sebastian was born, his birth completed a very happy family.
Since meeting Adolfo, I noticed that he was a quiet and respectful man, this was reflected in the way the CHP office staff and officers addressed him. Adolfo’s hobby was wood whittler and when he had a spare moment would bring out his knife and began to work on any piece of wood that he found at the moment.
But he also had another passion; this was, taking his BMW Motorcycle for a ride, anytime and anywhere. Without question though, was his love and dedication to his wife and children, if he wasn’t working he was in the company of his family and he was happy with that.
I remember most clearly the day my Compadre died; I was on patrol duty returning from San Jose Superior Court in my patrol car when San Jose CHP dispatch notified the officers that our helicopter had crashed. Having been on my way to the CHP Office, I continued and pulled into the office patrol parking lot. It was immediately apparent, by the expression on all personnel that the officers had died in the crash.
I hurried into the office and the expression of Sergeant Bob Flores confirmed my worst fears, which was, that both officers were killed in the crash. Adolfo was gold, both in commitment to his family and dedication to the California Highway Patrol, as well as in the friendly manner he related to fellow officers, office personnel and the public. He was a very laid back man, but one that took care of business, who served as an example of what a law enforcement officer, and specifically a California Highway Patrolman and family man should be.
The National Latino Peace Officers, California Highway Patrol, as well as his family and friends are extremely proud of Adolfo Hernandez and Fred Enright. They were both honored last year; the CHP along with CalTrans placed a freeway sign dedicated to both officers. You can view the plaque on Northbound I 680 Freeway between the cities of Milpitas and Hayward California.
Ricardo Suito; California NLPOA Chapter Executive Vice President; Joe Farrow, California Highway Patrol Commissioner; Vicente Calderon, NLPOA Founder; Steve Fajardo, California NLPOA Chapter Parliamentarian.
Ricardo Suito, California NLPOA Chapter Executive Vice President; Vicente Calderon, NLPOA Founder; Ellen Corbett, California State Majority Leader, and Steve Fajardo, California NLPOA Chapter Parliamentarian.
Vicente Calderon speaking at the Adolfo Hernandez Memorial Dedication Services in East Bay.