Steve Faircloth, former Bridge City police chief passed away at his residence in West Orange on Feb. 7, 2014 at the age of 63. A long time resident of Bridge City, Faircloth had been living in West Orange since Hurricane Ike.

Steve was the son of the late Lee Scott and Doris Mae Faircloth.

When he graduated Bridge City High School in 1969, he knew he wanted to be police chief someday. The reason, he said, wasn’t complicated. “I felt a calling to spend a life of service,” he said. “And what better place to do it than the place you grew up.”

He attended Sul Ross and the University of Virginia. Faircloth had graduated the 18 week FBI Academy in Quantico, Va. and was a Master Police Officer through T.C.L.E.O.S.E. which is now known as T.C.O.L.E. Steve was also a member of the Bridge City Masonic Lodge.

Steve Faircloth's graduation from the FBI Academy in the early 90s

Steve Faircloth’s graduation from the FBI Academy in the early 90s

Faircloth started his law enforcement career in 1973 with the Orange County Sheriff’s Department, serving under Sheriff Buck Patillo. In a past interview with The Record he recounted that first interview.

“I remember it so well because that was the last time we had a real snow here,” he says. “I drove through the snow to be interviewed by the sheriff’s department. Buck kept trying to discourage me by saying, ‘You really don’t want to do this.’ But I was persistent, and they eventually hired me because they realized I was just going to keep coming back.”

He spent some time serving under Chief Wilson Roberts in Bridge City, hired with Burns Bobbit as his partner. “That was a time when the government was putting a lot of money into private and public jobs,” he says. “We were hired with some grant money.” After briefly serving with Chief Butch Reynolds in Vidor, he got into a home-building business with his father-in-law, however, rising interest rates couldn’t keep the company going.

Faircloth then spent 28 years with the Bridge City Police Department with 12 as chief, retiring at 57.

“I’ve seen the town go from a newly-incorporated city and the first growth of government we had and the police department from a portable building to what’s now the water department building and then the current building,” said Faircloth at the time of his retirement. He said after dealing with illness and family losses the last few years, he wanted some time to rest.

Steve lost his brother, Lee Scott Faircloth Jr. in 2000 and his wife, Dorothy (Crumpler) Faircloth in 2006.

“I can say I was an honest policeman with honest employees,” he said.  “During my tenure as chief, no lawsuit was filed against the city or the police department. If you can go 12 years without getting sued, it’s got to be some kind of record. I think I’m leaving with the city in very good shape.

“During [Hurricanes] Rita and Humberto, I remember going down to the police station with a pillow, because you know you’re not going to be leaving for a while.”

Steve is survived by his daughter, Stephanie Faircloth of Long Beach, Calif. and his sister, Pat Faircloth of Houston.

Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m., Friday, Feb. 14 at Claybar Funeral Home Chapel in Bridge City. Masonic graveside services and Police Officers Military Honors will be held at Hillcrest Memorial Gardens following the services. His cremated remains will be interred at a later date.

Visitation will be from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., Thursday at the funeral home.