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Community Heroes

Ron Jarrell

Ron Jarrell, the former Sheriff of Lassen County, was born in Picayune, Mississippi, but is nearly a native of Lassen County, moving to Susanville in 1954 at the age of seven. He graduated to Lassen High School in 1964, where he played both football and baseball and then attended Lassen College and played third base for the Cougar baseball team. After receiving his associate's degree in criminal justice, he transferred to Chico State where he earned his BA in Public Administration.

Following college, he served in the United States Army from 1967 to 1969. During that time, he was a combat leader at the rank of Staff Sergeant in Vietnam and received numerous medals including the Combat Infantryman's Badge, Air Medal, Purple Heart and Bronze Star.

Upon returning home, Ron applied with the Lassen County Sheriff's Department. He was accepted into the police academy and began a 35-year career that included the rank of Deputy Sheriff, Sergeant and Sheriff, and received numerous community awards along the way for his service, valor and bravery. He also served as the Lassen County Sheriff-Coroner for 20 years as well as the Undersheriff in Contra Costa County for three years

In 1972, Ron married Sherry Johnson and this past February they celebrated their 47th wedding anniversary. They have two daughters, Niki and Lindsy, both standout athletes in their own right, playing field hockey and softball at Lassen High School, as well as collegiate softball.

Grandsons, Ben Cunningham, is presently serving in the United State Marine Corps and Jarrell Cunningham played baseball at Lassen College for two years under Head Coach Frank Avilla and received All Conference honors his sophomore year.