The Pearly Gates have stepped up security! Bruce Alvin Mathis assumed his new detail on April 16, 2013 after a life rich with service to God, his country and local community. A life-long resident of El Paso , he served his country in the United States Army while stationed in Germany and afterwards receiving an Honorable Discharge. In 1960, he was commissioned into the El Paso Police Department where he served his community for 21 years. During his service, Bruce became the first African-American to be promoted to the rank of Detective in the department's history. His law-enforcement career spanned many years and agencies to include El Paso Community College , the United States Marshall's service and a Private Investigator business. He is preceded in death by his father, Ruben Smith; his mother, Frozie Mathis; brother, William Smith and sisters Betty Dixon and Bessie Smith. He is survived by his brothers, James Bason and Rev. James Smith; sister, Ophelia Harvey; brother in law Richard Dixon; children, Diana Mathis-Yellock (Gene), Bryan Mathis (Tammy), Alyson Mathis-Roberts, Leah Mathis-Peay. He has 13 grand children, 11 great grand children and 1 great-great -grand child and a "whole mess" of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends. Visitation will be held Sunday, April 21, 2013 from 5 to 9 pm at Hillcrest Funeral Home, 1060 N. Carolina Drive . Funeral services will be held on Monday, April 22, 2013 at St. Mark's United Methodist Church , 5005 Love Road at 11am followed by interment at Fort Bliss National Cemetery at 1:30. Pallbearers will be members of the El Paso Police Department Honor Guard. Our deepest thanks and appreciation go out to Chief Greg Allen and the El Paso Police Department, Fort Bliss Honor Guard and Hillcrest Funeral Home for their outstanding efforts and support.
Published in El Paso Times from Apr. 20 to Apr. 27, 2013