ADA — Longtime Pontotoc County Sheriff Jeff Glase’s short battle with cancer ended late Monday. He was 53.

Glase was diagnosed with leoblastoma — an aggressive form of brain cancer — in April. The prognosis was not optimistic.

“The family had been told that the end was near,” said Joe Glover, Pontotoc County Undersheriff who served under Glase for 10 years. “My thoughts and prayers go out to Jeff’s family.”

Glover said Glase left his mark on Pontotoc County.

“All of us owe Jeff Glase a large debt of gratitude for his service,” Glover said. “Jeff was a staunch supporter of the sheriff’s department. Even though we are not the highest paid or the largest force in law enforcement, Jeff always thought it was important to instill respect for the department. He was respected by everyone and treated everyone fairly.”

Glase’s 12-year run as Pontotoc County sheriff ended in January 2006 after he was defeated by Pete Peterson, current Pontotoc County sheriff.

He had planned to go to Iraq to help train members of the country’s new police force, but he didn’t pass his physical, the first sign that something was wrong.

There has been several area fund-raising efforts to help defray mounting medical costs.

“He was a good man who cared about the people of this county,” said Marcia Glase, his wife. “He was a firearms instructor and was active the drug court program. Jeff dealt with his illness and helped others around him deal with it. He’d say, ‘That’s life. You have to learn to deal with it.’ He kept his sense of humor until the very end.”

Glase had served as a sheriff’s deputy for 11 years before taking charge of the department. He was a veteran, serving three years in the U.S. Army as a military policeman in Germany, and completed three years at East Central University in Ada.

Glover said Glase’s death leaves a big void to those who served with him.

“It just seems so wrong that someone that young was taken from us,” Glover said. “Since his condition was diagnosed, it has made me take a look at myself. It has made me consider if I have my priorities where they should be. He was a good friend and I will miss him. Jeff and I went through the basic CLEET academy back in 1982, so we have a long history. We sit side by side throughout the course and that was the beginning of a good relationship.”

Jeff Glase was a special individual, according to Ernestine Eubank, Pontotoc County court clerk.

“We had a lot of respect for Jeff,” she said. “He loved to tease.”

Jeff Glase leaves behind his wife Marcia, a son, a stepdaughter and two granddaughters.

Services for Glase are pending with Ada’s Criswell Funeral Home.

(Note: Staff Writer Liz Brewer contributed to this article)

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