The Fayetteville Police Department lost one of their own on April 15 when Detective Joanna Macpherson passed away after a lengthy battle with cancer.
“It is with the most profound sense of grief and loss that we announce the passing of our sister, Detective Joanna Macpherson, after an extended battle with cancer,” said Capt. Mike Whitlow. “Joanna was the embodiment of a warrior’s spirit while at the same time having a servant’s heart. During her battle, she never lost her smile and for much of the time continued to work through treatments. Joanna even participated in ‘Tough Mudder’ competitions and cancer walks after her diagnosis, and refused to give in or give up.”
Whitlow said, “Joanna came to us on Aug. 11, 2008, via Great Britain by way of California and brought with her an infectious laugh, a determined work ethic and a kind word for everyone. We all enjoyed educating her about Southern culture and relished her educating us on European culture.”
Whitlow said Macpherson became the department’s crime scene investigator and, in doing so, transformed her position. Joanna’s work and testimony were the key factors in numerous convictions in court cases. “She reformed our evidence room and crime scene procedures,” Whitlow explained.
“We are sad to learn of the passing of Detective Joanna Macpherson,” said Fayetteville City Manager Ray Gibson. “She is held in the highest regard by her fellow officers and her other city of Fayetteville colleagues. Our thoughts and prayers are with Detective Macpherson’s family as they grieve their difficult loss.”
Whitlow said Macpherson leaves behind her husband Nick, sons Zach and Zeke, many family members as well as her brothers and sisters in blue.
“Grieve with us but also celebrate with us a brave, gracious and beautiful person who touched and bettered us all,” Whitlow asked.
Flags at the Fayetteville Police Department, City Hall, and the city fire stations have been lowered to half-mast in respect for Detective Macpherson and her family, according to city spokesman Danny Harrison.