Glen Ridge, NJ - The Glen Ridge Police Department has announced the passing of beloved Officer Charles “Rob” Roberts. He succumbed to complications of COVID-19, police officials announced.

According to a release by the township, Officer Roberts, badge #69 is the first line of duty death within the history of the Glen Ridge Police Department, established in 1895.

At the age of 45, Roberts fought the battle against COVID 19 and passed away on May 11, 2020 at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City. He had been hospitalized there for just shy of three weeks after members of his own squad and the volunteer ambulance squad came to his aide. The doctors and nurses at both Mountainside Hospital and Lenox Hill Hospital all acted to save his life.

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Officer Roberts was raised in Livingston, New Jersey, and joined the Glen Ridge Police Department in 2000. He settled in Glen Ridge, where along with his wife Alice, they raised their three children.

Officials stated that Officer Roberts was the face of the Glen Ridge Police Department and a shining example of an officer dedicated to serving the community.

Through the years Officer Roberts served in additional roles and was also known as a bicycle officer, certified car seat installer, and DARE/LEAD instructor. He held the honor of being the most senior officer within the patrol division and served as a detective and a field training officer within the department.

Roberts also supported law enforcement races such as the Law Enforcement Torch Run which benefits the Special Olympics and the Tunnel to Towers Run honoring the lives of first responders lost on September 11, 2001. 

Officials said, "The loss of Officer Roberts has extinguished the presence of a pillar and staple within the law enforcement community and the Borough of Glen Ridge. Despite our loss, the ever-lit green front porch lights at headquarters will continue to serve as a beacon for those in need. Rest easy our brother in blue, you will never be forgotten and have left a permanent mark on each life you have touched. To have known you is to have loved you."

A GoFundMe campaign has been set up to help his family.