In Memory of Deputy Sheriff Michael Neau
On Sunday, September 5, 2021, Florida residents were disheartened that Florida had lost another officer to the coronavirus pandemic. Deputy Sheriff Michael Neau, badge number 164, died from complications of COVID19. He was 36 years old. Since the start of the pandemic, the US has lost hundreds of officers to this virus. Deputy Neau is the 5th officer in the state of Florida to die in the line of duty from this virus. Additionally, he is the 6th officer in the history of his department.
Neau was a lifelong civil servant. He had been working with the Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office for over ten years. Neau was a veteran of the US Air Force and had spent time stationed in Korea. He earned an associate’s degree through the law enforcement academy located at Northwest Florida State College. He had been born in Niceville and received his degree there as well. After graduation, Neau joined the OCSO in 2011.
Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office, Florida
Deputy Neau spent his law enforcement career with the OCSO. He had a long career still ahead of him. Neau loved being a servant to the residents in his community. Okaloosa was the 52nd county initiated in Florida. The county seat is Crestview. What is unique is that while there is a district office in Crestview, the headquarters for the OCSO is located in nearby Shalimar.
The OCSO is a large law enforcement office with three centers. The headquarters is in Shalimar, the North District in Crestview, and the East District in Destin, Florida. In addition, the agency has a Marine Unit, a Beach Patrol, a K-9 Unit, Special Response Team, and even an entire Mounted Posse. They provide services to more than 210,000 residents, with its jurisdiction covers 930 square miles, which does not include the additional 152 square miles of waterfront for which the department is responsible.
Deputy Sheriff Michael Neau left behind his wife and six children. These six children will rely on the community and colleagues of Deputy Neau to help them achieve their full potential. Officers from around the area will gather to perform honors for Deputy Neau and support his family through their difficult times. Residents will also follow suit, lining the streets to show their respects and gratitude for the sacrifice made on their behalf.
The Okaloosa Sheriff’s Office reminded the community to pray for and help support the young children left behind from this tragic loss. “We are overwhelmingly saddened by the passing of one of our OCSO family members. 36-year-old Deputy Michael Neau passed away on September 5th. We are praying for his wife, their young children, and extended family and friends. We ask you to keep them in your thoughts.”
In addition, OCSO also stated, “We are praying for his wife, their young children, and extended family and friends. We ask you to keep them in your thoughts. Together, our OCSO family will lift and support them, not only through these dark times but in the future as well. We will honor Michael’s service and sacrifice. We will continue to love and support his family, and we should all pull our loved ones in a little closer during this tragic reminder of how short and cruel life can be. We need one another.”
Neau family members posted their thoughts on the type of man that Neau had been. “He never met a stranger or an enemy. Michael has a fantastic way of lightening any situation, making people laugh regardless of the circumstance. He is always there to wrap anyone in a big bear hug; nothing can ruffle his feathers. He exudes sincerity to every person he encounters with his larger-than-life presence, genuine smile, and infectious laughter.”