Israel Brooks Jr.
Israel Brooks Jr., a native of Newberry, South Carolina, served the State of South Carolina and this Nation with great distinction in law enforcement. He was born on June 30, 1944, graduated from Gallman High School located in Newberry, South Carolina in 1962 and promptly enlisted in the United States Marines Corps where he served four and half years. He was honorably discharged as a Sergeant in 1966.
In 1967, Israel Brooks Jr. became the first African American to serve as a State Trooper for the South Carolina Highway Patrol. He also became the first African American promoted to a supervisory rank within the South Carolina Highway Patrol, where he was quickly promoted through the ranks to Corporal, then Sergeant, Lieutenant, Captain, and Major; thereby becoming second in command in charge of highway patrol's administrative support functions. The South Carolina Criminal Justice Academy presents an Israel Brooks Physical Fitness Award annually to one exceptional Basic Law Enforcement Class Graduate.
In 1994, upon recommendation of United States Senator Ernest F. Hollings, Major Israel Brooks was appointed by President Bill Clinton as United States Marshal for the District of South Carolina and served in this very important position until his retirement in November 2002.
In addition to his career spanning 40 years of public service in law enforcement, he also was a highly respected civic and community leader and role model. He devoted considerable time and effort in giving guest lectures at numerous elementary, middle, high schools and institutions of higher learning throughout South Carolina.
Major Israel Brooks died on September 7, 2007 following a long battle with cancer. He is survived by his wife, Barbara; son, Errol; two daughters, Nadine and Tiffini; (daughter Miriam is deceased); nine grandchildren; and a host of loving relatives. His homegoing services were held at Saint John Baptist Church, Columbia, South Carolina on September 12, 2007.
In September 2009, the members of the South Carolina General Assembly request the Department of Transportation to name the Interstate Highway 26 and South Carolina Highway 121 interchange in Newberry County as the "U. S. Marshal Israel Brooks, Jr. Memorial Interchange" and to erect appropriate signs or markers reflecting this designation in recognition of the many achievements of Israel Brooks, Jr. attained during his illustrious law enforcement career.
Major Israel Brooks is fondly remembered for his generosity, focus on education, big smile, competitive nature and LOVE of the game of golf.
Israel Brooks, Jr. was inducted into the South Carolina Law Enforcement Officers Hall of Fame for "Meritorious Service in 2018."
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US Marshal celebrates a year of success
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The Newberry Observer
Brooks Take Office As SC's U.S. Marshal
Marshal Brooks Guest Speaker for Law Enforcement Day
Brooks breaking barriers
Brooks Named No. 3 in Patrol