def # 202 10/26/11
OCEAN COUNTY MOURNS THE LOSS OF UNDERSHERIFF RUPERT
TOMS RIVER - As Hurricane Irene set its sights on Ocean County in late August, the Ocean County Office of Emergency
Management mobilized its forces in preparation for what was going to be a big and dangerous storm.
At the helm of the operations, was Ocean County Undersheriff Wayne R. Rupert, who had served as Deputy Emergency
Management Coordinator since 1992. With his calm demeanor Rupert, as he had done so many times, assisted effortlessly in the
storm preparations and helped in overseeing a mass mandatory evacuation of coastal communities. The result was thousands of
people were moved out of harms’ way to safety. For Rupert, it was all part of the job.
"Wayne was able to take stressful situations like preparing for Hurricane Irene and help calm people so that work
went along smoothly and the things that needed to get done got done," said Freeholder John P. Kelly, Director of Law and
Public Safety. "Wayne was also a wealth of knowledge and had brought his expertise to the table many times, helping to
guide the course of the Ocean County Sheriff’s Department so it is one of the best in the state."
The Ocean County Board of Freeholders today remembered Undersheriff Rupert who died suddenly Oct. 22 at the age of
"To say he will be sorely missed is an understatement," said Freeholder Director Joseph H. Vicari. "This was a man
who spent 44 years with Ocean County. He began his career working in the Ocean County Jail and moved up the ranks to be
named our Undersheriff in 2001.
"He has left a mark on law enforcement in Ocean County and his death has left a great void in not only our Sheriff’s
Department but throughout this County," Vicari said.
During his career, Rupert worked in communications, he was an instructor at the Ocean County Police Academy, also
at the New Jersey State and County Correction Academy. He also served as Commander of the Identification and Court Security
Divisions of the Sheriff’s Department and had been commander of the Sheriff’s Department Internal Affairs Unit. He continued
as Deputy County Emergency Management Coordinator while Undersheriff.
"Wayne dedicated his professional life to Ocean County," said Freeholder Deputy Director Gerry P. Little. "He was a model in
our law enforcement community and he put the safety of Ocean County residents first."
As Undersheriff, Rupert also assisted in the day-to-day operations of the department closely working with Sheriff William L.
Polhemus and Chief Michael Osborn. He also oversaw the weekly foreclosure sales in Ocean County.
"Wayne was compassionate toward people," said Freeholder John C. Bartlett Jr. "Whatever he did, he put others first."
He also enjoyed spending time with his family, and often talked about spending time with his grandson.
"He was a family man, a dedicated county employee and a friend that we all will truly miss," said Freeholder James F.
Lacey. "Our sympathy and our prayers go out to his family and the Ocean County Sheriff’s Department."