Obituary: Robert Earl “Bob” Moody
Former Claremont Police Chief, great-grandfather, sportsman, animal lover
Robert Earl “Bob” Moody, a former Claremont Police Chief, died August 13 at age 88.
He was a graduate of Newport Harbor High School and earned a bachelor’s degree from Pepperdine University. He began his career in law enforcement in 1957 with the Costa Mesa Police Department. He married Patricia Anne Moody on October 20, 1979.
Bob worked as a patrolman and detective and became proficient in the use of the early “Identi-Kit” investigative tool that helped detectives develop composite sketches of criminals. He was promoted to sergeant, lieutenant, and captain at CMPD. He worked in all divisions within the department, and was the division commander of the detective bureau, patrol division, and support services divisions at different times throughout his career.
He was instrumental in the development of the CMPD helicopter program and was proud to be one of the first pilots of the aptly named EAGLE (emergency air ground law enforcement) helicopters. He also helped to create what was then a state-of-the-art records bureau using the most modern equipment available for accurate keeping, storing, and quick accessibility.
He was very supportive of the reserve officer, retired senior volunteer and police explorer programs, and greatly appreciated their countless hours of service and value to the department and the community.
His daughter Janie served 25 years with CMPD and worked in several divisions within the department, including developing the police bloodhound K9 team. His grandchildren, Matt, Amanda, Alexander, Benjamin, and Jamie all actively participated in the CMPD Police Explorers program. Matt also became a reserve police officer and Jamie was a cadet and later a custody officer for the department.
While working as a captain, he attended the rigorous FBI National Academy and excelled in his class. He was also an avid competitive shooter during the early and middle part of his career and enjoyed shooting after retirement as well.
He retired from the Costa Mesa Police Department in 1989 and took the Claremont Police Chief job later that year.
At CPD he was instrumental in starting the Adopt-a-Cop program, which focused on building relationships between elementary school students and police officers. He was proactive in partnering with the chamber of commerce, Rotary Club and Kiwanis organizations, prioritizing positive relationships between the community and law enforcement. In a town where education stood out, he also worked hand in hand with the Claremont Colleges’ administrators and presidents. His “Thursday nights in the park” events offered unique opportunities for Claremont residents to casually mingle with and meet their local police officers.
“Bob always brought a positive attitude, focusing not only on connecting government officials and citizens, but also internally within the department,” said a former colleague. “He was overwhelmingly appreciated for his honesty, integrity and professionalism, acknowledging people through their work efforts and accomplishments.”
He retired as Claremont Police Chief in 2000.
He was an avid boater, fisherman, poker player, golfer, and animal lover. He grew up water-skiing, especially on trips to the river, and loved people and a good party. “Dad always was a hit at the local ‘mixers,’” his family added. He loved taking time to go to the shooting range, even into his late 80s. He was an advocate for animals, a licensed helicopter pilot, a Freemason, and built and collected LGB model trains.
“Level-headed, calm, organized and responsible, he also shared a quirky sense of humor and spontaneity,” his family said. “He was the calming force in complex situations.”
He was a member of the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry, where he was master of the lodge; the California Peace Officers Association; the Republican National Committee; the National Rifle Association; the International Association of Chiefs of Police; the Order of the Eastern Star; and the National Association for Gun Rights. He was a retired member of the Inland Valley Humane Society and SPCA’s board of directors and was a platinum supporter of the American Heart Association.
He is survived by his wife, Patricia Anne Moody; sister, Marvallee Cariaga; children Robin Jeanne Lassen, Janie Earlene Walker, and Brett Robert Moody; grandchildren Matthew Walker, Amanda Shidler, Benjamin Walker, Jamie Hooker, Alexander Lassen, and Alexandra Moody; great-grandchildren Kaycee Makemson, 26, Jonathan Walker, 24, Brooke Makemson, 23 and Brittany Walker, 23, of Frisco, Texas, Aine, 20, Elly 18, Callie 13, Delanie, 11 and Eli, 10, from Anna, Texas; and his dogs, Yosha and Oliver.