Elsworth E Groves
July 15, 1933 – June 13, 2021
Elsworth Groves was born on July 15, 1933, in Hindsville, Arkansas, to parents Calvin and Jessie Groves. Throughout his youth, his family moved to many places, including Colorado, Washington, Nevada, and Idaho, eventually settling in California. Els grew up helping with his family businesses and obtaining various odd jobs throughout his youth. In 1951, when the Korean War broke out, Els and his brother Ernie joined the Navy. After boot camp, they were both assigned to the destroyer, USS Chauncey, which took them throughout the world until 1954, when Els was honorably discharged. Els began his law enforcement career in 1955 with the California Corrections department where he was assigned to the California Men’s Colony in San Luis Obispo. In 1957, he took the test for the California Highway patrol and was accepted into the CHP academy in 1958. Upon graduation, he was assigned to the Ventura office until 1966, when he was promoted to the rank of sergeant and transferred to San Francisco. He eventually returned to Ventura but was promoted to the rank of lieutenant in 1971 and transferred to West Los Angeles. From there, he received a field administration position in Oceanside as an executive officer and then became the administrative lieutenant at the CHP Division headquarters in San Diego. In 1977, Els attended the FBI Academy in Quantico, Virginia, where he graduated in December of that year and was quickly promoted to the rank of CHP captain and took over command of the Antelope Valley area office. Els completed his CHP career at the AV office when he was forced to retire as the result of an on duty head-on collision. His official retirement was in December of 1987. In 1986, at the request of many community leaders, Els ran for a four year term on the Lancaster City Council. He was successful in the election and he remained on the council until 1990, serving as mayor of Lancaster in 1988. His other “post-retirement” careers included obtaining his real estate brokers license and selling homes at the then-new Rancho Vista development. He also served as a hearing officer and a housing inspector for Los Angeles County. Els and his wife, Philene, moved to homes in Pioneer, CA and Bullhead City, AZ during their retirement but eventually made their way back to the Antelope Valley where Els died peacefully in the early morning of Sunday, June 13, 2021. Els is survived by his wife of 56 years, Philene, daughter Barbara McIver (Ron) of Red Bluff, CA , son Dan Groves (Arlis) of Elk Grove, CA , daughter Sandy Smith (Lee) of Lancaster, CA, twelve grandchildren and numerous great grandchildren. He is also survived by his brother Ernest, of Templeton, CA. Services will be held on Tuesday, June 22nd, 10 am, at Joshua Memorial Park & Mortuary, 808 E. Lancaster Blvd. He will be interred privately at the National Cemetery in Riverside, CA. Donations in his memory can be made to the Alzheimer’s Association or to the CHP Widow’s and Orphans fund.
Tuesday, June 22, 2021
Elsworth E Groves
June 26, 2021
My deepest sympathy. May his memory be for a blessing.
June 16, 2021
Sandy, my experience with your was always pleasant. As I recall, he was all smiles! May his memory be a blessing to you and your family.