Sheriff Bill Gore and other department leaders will honor retired sheriff’s Capt. Leland McPhie on Monday at the agency’s museum — his 100th birthday.
“He dedicated 28 years of his career to the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department as a deputy. Now it’s the agency’s turn to give back,” the department said in a release marking March 10 as Leland McPhie Day.
McPhie joined the Sheriff’s Department in 1940 working in the old downtown jail. He took 2 1/2 years off to serve in World War II. He wrote the first Policy and Procedure or manual for deputies who work in the jail.
At the age of 40, he was promoted to captain — the youngest to achieve that rank at the time. He also collaborated with architects on the plans fo the 1960s jail downtown and even designed a special lock for cell doors that was patented. McPhie retired in 1969.
Leland is also well‐known for his lifelong passion for track and field. He began competing in high
school. As a San Diego State College athlete, he earned the nick name “Grasshopper” for a record long jump of 24 feet, 7 inches during the Southern California Intercollegiate Conference meet in 1937.
McPhie is preparing to take part in the USA Masters Indoor Track & Field Championships in Boston, where he will be the oldest entrant.
He plans to compete in four events, including the high jump, shot put and weight throw — possibly adding to his collection of world age-group records.
To learn more about the Sheriff’s Museum, visit sheriffsmuseum.org.
— San Diego County Sheriff’s Department contributed to this report