December 19 - December 25
“Organizational pride is the positive feeling experienced by employees from being part of a meaningful team that is rich in history, tradition and culture.” - Honor First and Esprit De Corps
Newton-Azrak Award Actions
(Also see Upholding Honor First)
An organization’s values are codified in its awards system. Recognizing the achievements, service and heroism of employees is important. It is critical for those in positions of leadership to value the workforce. Awards are a fundamental manner for leaders to demonstrate appreciation to the workforce for upholding the organizational values. – U.S. Border Patrol Honorary Awards
As of December 8, 2021, the U.S. Border Patrol has suffered 151* fallen.
The facts regarding each officer are presented without major editing of the "language of the day" found in the reports detailing the circumstances of each event. This is done to provide the reader an association with historical timeframes.
Employees who died in the line of duty due to being exposed to deadly illnesses will not have the cause of death listed.
*With the exception of two of the fallen immediately below, all names are listed (or in the process of being included) on the official Honor Roll of U.S. Border Patrol fallen and inscribed on the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial. The U.S. Border Patrol should fix these discrepancies. HonorFirst.com honors both of the fallen.
Robert H. Lobdell
Date of Birth: May 15, 1898
Entered on Duty: June 16, 1928
Title: Patrol Inspector
End of Watch: December 25, 1928
Patrol Inspector Lobdell was shot and killed instantly on the night of December 25, 1928, near Roseau, Minnesota, by an individual who was suspected of being an alien entering the United States illegally. Inspector Lobdell was shot while he was attempting to get the individual into the patrol car for transportation to Warroad, Minnesota. The murderer was apprehended the following day, but he denied his guilt and steadfastly refused to make any statement that would reveal his past history. He was later convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment in the state penitentiary at Stillwater, Minnesota. Reportedly, he subsequently corresponded with the judge of the court in which he was tried, confessing that he had killed Patrol Inspector Lobdell.
As per this document, his wife received $52.50 per month upon his death.
George R. DeBates
Date of Birth: November 19, 1972
Entered on Duty: April 25, 1999
Title: Border Patrol Agent
End of Watch: December 19, 2004
On December 19, 2004, Agent George R. DeBates was involved in a single-vehicle accident while on patrol near Pisinimo, Arizona. He died as a result of his injuries.
Agent DeBates was working on a camp detail while assigned to the Casa Grande Station. Agent DeBates is the fourth Department of Homeland Security employee to die in the line of duty since the Department was created in March 2003.
Originally, from Wisconsin, Agent DeBates was a graduate of the 403rd session of the Border Patrol Academy. A four-year veteran of the Border Patrol, Agent DeBates was assigned to the Casa Grande Station, on detail to the Ajo Station.
Luis O. Peña Jr.
Date of Birth: July 16, 1977
Entered on Duty: January 27, 2003
Title: Border Patrol Agent
End of Watch: December 23, 2019
On December 23, 2019, Border Patrol Agent Luis O. Peña Jr. succumbed to complications related to significant injuries he received from a vehicle accident (roll over) on the Tohono O’odham Nation on October 18, 2007. BPA Peña was medically retired on October 8, 2010.
Agent Peña entered on duty with the United States Border Patrol on January 27, 2003, as a member of the 538th session of the Border Patrol Academy. He was assigned to the Casa Grande Border Patrol Station in the Tucson Sector following his graduation. Agent Peña served with the United States Border Patrol for over seven years.
Help spread the word!
Blog author, retired U.S. Border Patrol Assistant Chief and, current U.S. Border Patrol employee advocate.
Site founder and owner, former Supervisory Border Patrol Agent and retired Immigration Special Agent.
U.S. Border Patrol historian and retired Deputy Chief Patrol Agent.
I prefer that you leave comments. However, if you wish to contact me, please do so by emailing Cliff@HonorFirst.com.