Crestwood Chief Ron Compton retires


Retiring Chief Ron Compton, far left second row, thanks the city and his family.

By Erin Achenbach, Staff Reporter

The city of Crestwood said farewell to former Police Chief Ron Compton, who retired Oct. 14 after more than three decades of service with the Crestwood Police Department.

“Chief, your legacy of professionalism is going to be missed, as well as your guidance, your leadership and your good judgment,” said Mayor Grant Mabie at the virtual Board of Aldermen meeting Oct. 13, when aldermen passed a resolution unanimously honoring Compton.

“I never really thought about being in the position that I am in this evening. … I’ve been very fortunate because I have been able to fulfill the dream I had of being a police officer,” said Compton. “And to do it in such a good police department in such a wonderful city is just extra to me of something I couldn’t even imagine.”

Compton, a 1977 Lindbergh High School graduate, said that an acquaintance, then-Crestwood detective Sgt. David Higgins, suggested 31 years ago that Compton apply to be a police officer with the city. Compton, who joined the department in 1989, was a career investigator, served as a senior detective and detective sergeant for Crestwood, and was a member of the Major Case Squad of Great St. Louis for over 20 years.

He was named deputy chief in August 2014, before being promoted three years later in November 2017 to police chief, replacing retiring Chief Frank Arnoldy.

“I couldn’t have accomplished everything I did by myself … My wife, Nancy, has been by me every step of the way from the very beginning. I think that being a police spouse, in some ways, it’s more difficult than being a police officer itself,” said Compton. “I appreciate the sacrifices that you made all through my career. … Your encouragement and support have been unwavering … and words can’t adequately express how much I appreciate you. I could not have had the career I had without you.”

The former chief also took a moment to thank his children for their support through his career.

“I know it wasn’t always easy to have a policeman for a father, from having to behave a little bit better when you were younger, to all the worries that you had during the times I was a police officer,” said Compton. “I wanted to let you know that I really appreciate the support you’ve always given me as a police officer and how proud you were of me.”

Compton was succeeded by Johnathan Williams, a former lieutenant from the Webster Groves Police Department, who was hired by the Board of Aldermen in December.

Compton thanked City Administrator Kris Simpson for his “confidence in me to lead the department. Thank you for giving me this opportunity. It is something I will never forget. I would also like to thank the city employees that I have worked with. … I think that the city employees are one of the biggest reasons that Crestwood is such a great place to live and work.”